Eunice Hilda Ampomah, GNA
Accra, Sept. 4, GNA – The Communication for Development and Advocacy Consult (CDA Consult) on Tuesday commended the Ghana Standards Authority (GSA) for a market surveillance, which has established that 96 per cent of electrical products sold in parts of Accra were fake.
The GSA surveillance discovered that, products sold at the Opera Square and Zongo lane, the hub of electrical products in Accra were counterfeit and failed to meet standards.
The report revealed that out of the 204 electrical products sampled for laboratory testing, more than 92 per cent of them failed to meet the GSA L.I. 1541 labelling requirements, adding that, all extension boards failed the critical parameters test and general labelling requirements.
The Surveillance also revealed that more than 94 per cent of footwear sampled failed to conform to standards.
The CDA Consult noted that, the GSA market surveillance report affirms its campaign against counterfeit electrical products and electrical appliances embarked on since December 2017. The National Campaign embarked on by CDA Consult, was on the theme: “Avoid Patronage of Counterfeit Electrical Products/Electrical Appliances”.
The first phase of the campaign was covering the ten regional capitals and 150 district capitals over a period of three years.
Mr Francis Ameyibor, CDA Consult Executive Director, therefore warned the public not to take the authenticity of electrical products and electronic appliances for granted when purchasing any product.
“Actively seek information and education about any electrical product you intend purchasing, it helps in avoiding counterfeit products as fake electrical products and electronic appliances you purchased could turn out to be your death warrant,” Mr Ameyibor, stated in Accra.
He said GSA’s surveillance affirms the need to intensify the CDA Consult's National Anti-Counterfeit campaign, which sought to create public awareness about the dangers of fake goods, stressing that, 'it has become apparent and almost impossible to stop the proliferation of fake electrical products and electronic appliances in the country.
'Our only option is the power of purchase, you have an obvious choice to either purchase fake goods or go in for the genuine ones hence the urgent need for holistic public education, and we need to join forces to sanitize the Ghanaian market to stop patronizing fake goods'.
Mr Ameyibor encouraged stakeholders who want to join the crusade to contact CDA Consult through email: firstname.lastname@example.org, stressing that, the issues of counterfeiting of electrical products, had the potential to affect the health and safety of individuals and that it should be of concern to everyone.
The CDA Consult in collaboration with GSA with support from Services Merchandize Limited (SML) have organized two workshops at Ho in the Volta Region and Sunyani in Brong Ahafo Region.
The CDA Consult's Executive Director noted that everyone involved in the electrical sector - from consumer to manufacturer - had a role to play in protecting and preventing counterfeit electrical products from entering legitimate supply chains.
He said as part of the holistic campaign, an exhibition of electrical products and electronic appliances was organized alongside the workshop to practically provide a proactive platform for manufacturers, distributors, importers, installers, contractors, law enforcement and governmental bodies to understand the impact of counterfeit products.
Professor Alex Doodo, GSA Director General has described the issue of counterfeit electrical product as hitting the crisis level, adding that, the Authority would continue to embark on the periodic surveillance to rid the market of such products.
Prof Doodo, said the Surveillance was part of the Authority’s improved effort to check the proliferation of fake and substandard products on the market.
He explained that the move was critical due to the increased importation of counterfeit products onto the local market, saying, the country was losing millions of cedis due to the sale of such products.
Prof Dodoo assured the public that the Authority would continue to roll-out measures to clear the system of such fake products, because it was necessary to secure the health and lives of Ghanaians and protect them from such products.
Meanwhile electrical product authentication expert, Mr Vijay P. Gokaldas has described fake electrical products and electronic appliances as death traps, which must be avoided for the protection of life and property.
The expert, who is also the Chief Executive Officer of Services Merchandise Limited (SML), made this known in an interview with the Ghana News Agency on the GSA surveillance report and stressed the need to raise the tempo of the anti-counterfeit electrical product and electronic appliances campaign across the country.
Mr Gokaldas said everyone involved in the electrical sector – from consumer to manufacturer has a role to play in protecting and preventing fake electrical products from entering into the legitimate supply chains.
He pledged to support and collaborate with the CDA Consult campaign, which is providing a proactive platform for manufacturers, distributors, importers, installers, contractors, law enforcement and governmental bodies to join forces to fight against the proliferation of the counterfeit electrical products.
Mr Gokaldas called on electrical contractors, electricians, retailers, distributors and dealers in all types of electrical products to comply with safety requirements and join stakeholders to deal with product counterfeiting, which is a serious issue.