By Chimezie Anaso
Standards Organisation of Nigeria (SON) is taking steps to ensure safety of products in the water manufacturing process, the Director-General, Mr Osita Aboloma, has said.
Aboloma made the statement at a ceremony for the issuance of Mandatory Conformity Assessment Programme (MANCAP) certification to 13 companies in Anambra in Awka on Monday.
He identified some of the processes as the treatment and packaging of drinking water.
Aboloma, represented by SON Head of Operations, Mr Felix Nyado, said the National Assembly was working to make a law that would outlaw low quality and unsafe products in the water sector.
“Very soon most products in the water manufacturing process will be banned because they are not safe, of poor quality and below standard, they poison the water after storage for some time,” he said.
Aboloma lauded the firms, which were certified, for abiding by set standards in the manufacturing sector.
He said manufacturing was crucial at this stage of Nigeria’s national life and so the need to position it for global competitiveness.
The director-general said certificates given to the firms were like a loan which must be serviced consistently and qualitatively.
He said that failure by the manufacturers to keep standards would lead to withdrawal of the certification and heavy financial and operational penalties.
“Today, we are rewarding 13 manufacturing outfits in Anambra, who have pursued excellence in their production process using standards with the SON MANCAP certification mark.
“Globally, standards are increasingly becoming an issue in business as it impacts on development and in the introduction of new products, standards are never neutral, they reflect strength and innovativeness of those who develop them,” he said.
Aboloma said firms across the country should endeavour to key into SON certification programmes and enjoy immense benefits therein, including measures to check counterfeiting of standardised products.
“The impact of this exercise reduces cost of internal failure, ensures continued improvement of Quality Management System, increases customer satisfaction, improves corporate image and increases local and global market competitiveness,” he said.
In his remark, the Head of SON in Anambra, Mr Samuel Ayuba, described the selection process as intensive and comprehensive.
Ayuba said 10 of the 20 firms in Anambra recommended to the Bank of Industry (BoI) had received approval for loans to expand their businesses.
He said SON was not in operation to close or frustrate businesses but to help them grow through conformity with set standards.
“In the course of our conformity inspection, we recognised companies who met the standards but needed expansion and without them knowing it we recommended 20 of them and I am glad to inform you that 10 of them have qualified for BoI loan,” he said.
One of the recipients, Chief Samuel Nweke, on behalf of others, thanked SON for providing leadership in the quality assurance segment of the manufacturing sector.
Nweke pledged that the award would spur them to achieve higher quality and become brand ambassadors of the country.