Standards Organisation of Nigeria (SON) says all iron rods certified by the agency is fit for building and other projects in the country.
The Director General (DG) of SON, Malam Farouk Salim disclosed this yesterday while reacting to questions on incessant building collapse in the country from members of House of Representative committee on industry who were on oversight function at SON office in Lagos.
Salim who expressed displeasure over iron rods imported into the country without passing through the agency’s certification process, saying that in recent times, SON confiscated over a 100 tons of substandard iron rods imported into the country thereby saving the nation the agony of more building collapse.
“SON despite its constraints is doing everything to see that only good quality products are used in the country. The iron rods imported into the country don’t pass through SON and that is challenging.
“All the iron rods that pass through SON certification are good for use. In recent times, we have confiscated about 100 tons of poor quality iron rods and is determined to do more to save the nation the agony of building collapse,” Salim stated.
He expressed his pleasure to welcome the NASS committee members, disclosing that the Lagos Laboratory is the only laboratory in the country that serves about 200 million people.
“The significance of your presence is the fact that you would see for yourself the amount of work we are doing and the amount of work we need to do in the future to make this country safer, to make our industries competitive and to protect our people from substandard goods, gas explosion and collapsed buildings,” he stated.
He added that the oversight function cannot be overemphasized at a time when the African Continental Free Trade Agreement (AfCFTA) is in full force, stating that the need to develop the nation’s testing capacity to address unscrupulous elements who would want to use the trade pact to make Nigeria a dumping ground.
“Presently, our industries are at a disadvantaged position because they cannot export because we do not have enough capacity to test, monitor and certify local products, we need even more capacity to make sure that we train the small scale industries in the country.
“In that light, we have signed lots of Memorandum of Understandings (MoUs) with state Governors to help SMEs package, label and manufacture their products and certification for exports. We have potentials to do even more and we have lots of responsibilities but little tools to work with. We still need more to do even more,” he said.
He added that SON would be increasing its collaboration with the Department of Petroleum Resources (DPR) especially in the nation’s oil and gas sector, adding that SON recently just launched a more secured certification process to address issues of faking and forging of SON certificate.
The SON boss said it is taking the gospel of standardization to every part of the country, adding that most of the Governors that the agency has been privileged to meet have been welcoming restating their commitment to work with SON by way of providing lands for the establishment of State offices and laboratories