From Paul Osuyi, Asaba
The Standard Organisation of Nigeria (SON) warned on Tuesday that over 95% of steel materials in Nigerian markets are of sub-standard quality.
SON Director General/CEO Mallam Farouk Salam raised the alarm in Asaba, Delta State, during a stakeholders’ meeting with industry players in the South-South and South East.
Salam said from a recent sample carried out on products across the markets, only very few companies came out with good products, leaving majority of others as grossly sub-standard.
‘I don’t know the exact figure but I know that majority of steel out there are sub-standard. When we sampled, only very few companies came out with good products,’ he told reporters after the meeting.
Asked if fake steel materials was responsible for incessant building collapse in the country, Salam noted that unless a collapse incident is properly investigated, the cause could not easily be determined.
He said building collapse could be as a result of one or a combination of factors including the quantity and quality of cement used, quality of steel and the quality of workmanship among others.
Salam advised manufacturers to form a union in order to have a platform to partner with SON for the purpose of enforcement.
For consumers, Salam urged them to ‘look out for mark of companies, look out for sizes using the approved scale among other parameters.
‘They should also request for the certificate, the dealer should be able to provide a certificate, if not the consumer should go elsewhere to buy steel.’
He warned manufacturers, distributors and dealers to comply with standard, saying that in the next three months, SON would commence massive enforcement, adding that anyone dealing with sub-standard steel materials would be charged to court.
Some dealers including Nnaemeka Onuzulike, Ejike Ignatius and Anyikwa Iyke commended SON for the initiative but blamed Indian and Chinese manufacturers for sub-standard products in the market.