GSA shuts down cable manufacturing company "Operating without certification"
The Ghana Standard Authority (GSA) yesterday closed down an electrical cable manufacturing company at Tsopoli-Bueko in the Ningo Prampram District for producing without certification.
Also, the company, Fenice Metal Technology Company Limited, was found to be labelling its illegally finished products as manufactured in Turkey, China and Nigeria, before selling them to the public.
As part of the operation, the GSA enforcement team, led by the police, arrested nine people identified as heads of the factory’s operations.
At the factory, the Daily Graphic team that accompanied the GSA enforcement team observed that there were fully armed military personnel providing security in addition to some private security personnel.
Also, the factory was not in production as their power had been cut off by the Electricity Company of Ghana, and the Daily Graphic learnt that production only took place in the evenings with power from a generator.
Additionally, samples of the company’s products seized by the team were found to have fake markings of GSA certification as a way of making them look genuine.
The management, however, claimed that the company had applied for certification and was awaiting response from the authority.
The Head of Enforcement of the GSA who led the operation explained that the swoop was on the back of intelligence gathered by the authority following ECG’s visit to the factory where it was discovered that it was operating on an illegal electricity connection to evade paying the proper tariffs.
“From the work that we do, we have established that when manufacturers are committing such offences, they are carried out in pairs.
“So if a company is operating without paying tariffs and using an illegal connection to steal power from the state then of course it goes without saying that they would, most likely than not, be committing other offences,” he explained.
Mr Anti described such activities by any company as potentially catastrophic because if their products were substandard, they could cause a fire outbreak leading to the loss of property, and most importantly, lives.
He added that although the authority wanted to promote trade, its ultimate goal was to protect consumers.
He also said their operations could be detrimental to the socioeconomic development of the country as it had began to trade on the African Continental Free Trade Area (AfCFTA).
“We are moving into an era where we are trading under the AfCFTA and getting products from all sorts of places coming onto our market while ours will go to other people’s markets so we must make sure they meet standards and are safe, not just for use but fit for purpose as well,” Mr Anti said.
Mr Anti said under the GSA Act (Act 2022), there were a number of penalties that had been prescribed by law to be used as punishment for such activities with the lowest hanging fruit being administrative penalty which began from 1000 penalty units
He, therefore, affirmed that the authority would apply the full rigours of the law following the conclusions of investigations, including test results of the samples taken, to serve as deterrence to others and ensure such activities were nipped in the bud.