Unlawful use of conformity marks: GSA threatens to prosecute manufacturers
Local manufacturers have been cautioned against the use of illegal Standards Authority (GSA) marks of conformity on their products.
The authority said it would pursue, arrest and prosecute individuals and entities who were engaged in the use of illegal marks on their products to gain credibility.
The Head of Special Projects at the GSA, George Anti, who gave the advice, said through its market surveillance, the authority had identified some products bearing the illegal marks of conformity.
“We have noticed a worrying trend where some manufacturers pick up application forms for certification, make some payments and then start using the mark on their products for sale,” he added.
Mr Anti was speaking at a meeting with manufacturers, importers and dealers of electrical cables in Accra last Tuesday.
Present at the meeting were executives of the Ghana Union of Trade Organisations (GUTA), led by its president, Joseph Obeng and the Traders Advocacy Group Ghana (TAGG), including its General-Secretary, Nana Opoku.
The meeting discussed the rationale behind the GSA’s rigorous clampdown on substandard electrical cables which have inundated the market, among other issues.
According to Mr Anti, the illegal use of the marks cut across sectors but he mentioned some electrical cable dealers as some of those abusing the system most.
The Director-General of the GSA, Prof. Alex Dodoo, said the government was committed to changing the narrative of standards and services offered to consumers in the country.
In line with that, he said the authority had recruited about 200 trade standard officers (TSAs) who would be deployed around the country to enforce standards.
Meanwhile, manufacturers, importers and traders of cables in the country have pledged support for the exercise and said they would join forces with the GSA to fight the influx of substandard products in the market.
The GUTA president, Mr Obeng, said the discussions on standards had been ongoing for some time now, adding that the practice was a dent on the image of traders.
“I always defended cable importers whenever they were blamed for fire outbreaks just to protect the industry, but we must to do the right thing because nobody will plead on anyone’s behalf anymore.
“We will support the destruction of substandard products when they are confiscated. The only thing that will ensure quality is standards, and I will plead with the authority to expand the reach of its enforcement drive,” he said.
For his part, Nana Opoku also expressed his support for the exercise and said the GSA must begin to crack the whip.
He, however, entreated the authority to deepen engagement with the trading community on the need for them to abide by the rules.