The Standards Organisation of Nigeria has given manufacturers and importers of steel products three months to recall such fake and substandard products from the markets across the country.
The Director- General, SON, Mallam Farouk Salim, gave this ultimatum at a stakeholders’ meeting.
He noted that Nigeria Industrial Standard (117) for steel products must be adhered to, while sounding a note of warning to steel companies and importers to recall any substandard steel bar they have in the market before the expiration of the ultimatum.
The agency stated that steel products were key materials used in building bridges, houses and as such, must pass the quality threshold to safeguard lives and property.
He said, ”We want to also warn any steel manufacturer caught circumventing quality assurance requirements.
“Henceforth defaulters will be prosecuted in line with the SON Act 14 of 2015. We are giving this warning because the life of every Nigeria is important, any product that will destroy lives and property is not worthy to be in the Nigerian market.”
He added that compliance to quality and standards would guarantee local and international patronage of steel products made in Nigeria while also building the confidence of Nigerians in purchasing goods and services in the country.
He added, “I understand that the steel manufacturers undermine one another through the production of substandard steel reinforcement bars under the name and code of rival firms and competitors.
“Such act is not acceptable and it is to the detriment of the unsuspecting end-users who buy and use the products.
“We also warn you to desist from tampering with any consignment put on hold by officials of the agency for suspected infractions during investigation and quality verifications, such acts by anyone in the steel or other sectors will face the wrath of the law.”
He restated the agency’s commitment to ensure the safety of lives and property of Nigerians, part of which informed its recent nationwide monitoring of steel production.
“We are concerned over the non-compliance of key stakeholders in the industry, the agency will stop at nothing to bring sanity to Nigeria’s steel sector.
“Players producing without regards to NIS 117 will not be tolerated,” he said.
He said the Federal Government has been working tirelessly to support and expand steel manufacturing export in order to improve foreign exchange earnings.
“We are assuring genuine manufacturers of SON’s resilience and doggedness to protect local production from unfair competition,” the Director- General added.
According to the SON boss, steps are underway to harmonize standards for steel production across West Africa, this will avail steel manufacturers the opportunity to produce and export to different countries within the region.