The Standards Organisation of Nigeria (SON) on Thursday issued a three-month ultimatum to steel manufacturers and distributors to clear out substandard steel bars out of the nation’s markets.
The Director-General, SON, Malam Farouk Salim, gave this directive during an emergency meeting held at the SON complex in Ogba, Lagos.
Salim said it had become necessary to rid the market of fake products in order to ensure an improved quality of steel products.
He advised the steel manufacturers and marketers in the country to comply with the directive, warning that failure to obey would lead to prosecutions and serious jail time for offenders.
Salim said the agency would commence full-scale enforcement and mopping of substandard steel in factories and market at the expiration of the three-month ultimatum.
The DG condemned the recent spate of building collapse across the country, saying it was a big blow on the nation, especially the construction industry which the steel sector belonged to.
Salim said the consequences of these disasters were deeply troubling and the onus was on SON to get to the root cause of the issue with a view to finding a lasting solution.
He said both manufacturers and distributors have been given two months to form associations for self-regulation and organise ways of articulating industry challenges to ensure strict compliance.
“The association is also charged with rooting out their members especially those engaging in such inimical acts.
“The African Continental Free Trade Agreement which legally took effect from January 2021 means that our borders are open and any substandard product sold may be rejected thereby hindering economic growth.
“So, we have to do all we can to ensure that it does not play out that way and our products are trusted within and outside the shores of this country,” he said.