Iron rods distributors raise the alarm over substandard steel products
Iron rod distributors in the country have raised the alarm over the proliferation of substandard steel products in the Nigerian markets.
The people, under the aegis of the Iron Rods Distributors Association of Nigeria (IRDAN), thus urged the National Assembly to support efforts by the Standards Organisation of Nigeria (SON) to tackle the menace of substandard steel products in the country.
In a statement signed by the chairman and secretary of the group, Buhari Alabi and Abubakar Aliyu, respectively, in Ilorin on Monday, they said that such support would help to strengthen and bolster the campaign against substandard steel products and tackle economic saboteurs.
The iron rods merchants, who took a swipe at those the association referred to as 'saboteurs: due to their activities that have negatively affected the nation's economy, said that, "'We cannot over-emphasize the dangers posed to lives and property by having non-compliant and substandard steel products in the market. Fake products will not only seriously impact business operations, but also pose a threat to health and safety.
"Substandard steel products are often poorly made and tested and the consequences include low durability and a hazardous environment for employees. It also has economic effects as it could easily lead to increased cost for insurance, repairs, and replacement."
The association urged members of the National Assembly to prove themselves as conscientious men and women by allowing the interest of Nigerians to dwarf other possible considerations and support the campaign to get substandard steel products out of the Nigerian market.
The Director-General of the Standards Organisation of Nigeria (SON), Mr Farouk Salim, had recently ordered manufacturers and importers of steel products to get fake and substandard steel products out of the Nigerian market and prepare themselves for harmonised steel standard across West Africa.
Salim had added that the required Nigerian Industrial Standard (NIS) 117 must be adhered to because steel products are key materials used in building bridges and must pass the quality threshold to safeguard lives and property.
He had also said that steps were underway to harmonise standards for steel production across the West Africa sub-region to avail steel manufacturers the opportunity to produce and export to different countries within the region.
"Any steel manufacturer caught circumventing quality assurance requirements will be prosecuted in line with the SON Act 14 of 2015," he had said.