Consumers tick off ZABS

CONSUMERS have accused the Zambia Bureau of Standards (ZABS) of failing to do its  work by freely allowing counterfeit electrical appliances and  other sub-standards goods into Zambia via the country’s borders.

Some Lusaka residents complained that lack of strategies to restrict entry of low quality goods into Zambia has contributed, to especially the high number substandard electrical appliances to flood shops in towns.

Ms Gertrude Mwenshi complained that she has been a victim of buying poor quality electric kettle that worked only for three days, although was advised to report to ZABS.

“The Bureau of Standards must set up workable systems to make sure that these poor quality goods do not enter our borders instead of confiscating the stuff that is already on the market,” she said.

Ms Mwenshi explained that many people have continuously complained about poor quality electrical appliances on display in many retail shops all over the country, and wondered how ZABS had allowed the situation to carry on.

She said this was despite various pronouncements of improved operations at the entry points by ZABS.

Ms Mwenshi said that there were a lot of fake and low quality electrical appliances such as televisions, electric kettles, toasters, blenders, hot plates, fans and heaters in  retail outlets.

And ZABS public relations officer Lee Hamunji explained that it was the responsibility of the bureau to monitor and inspect goods coming into Zambia.

He said there were officers at all border points to check on imports but could not explain how there were so much counterfeit products on the market.

“We have personnel at all border points to monitor imports. It is the responsibility of ZABS to ensure that we do not get counterfeit products into Zambia,” he said.

In recent past there have been some sporadic seizures of counterfeit products across the country by ZABS with people questioning the role of ZABS in the importation and clearance of goods at the various border points.