Group worried over fake electrical products in Ghana
The Communications for Development and Advocacy (CDA) Consult has called for a stiffer punishment for dealers in fake electrical products in the country.
It said the country was gradually becoming a haven for the marketing of counterfeit electrical products, with the business thriving on the blind side of law enforcement agencies and regulators.
It has consequently called for urgent measures to intensify the sanitisation of the local market.
The Executive Director of CDA Consult, Mr Francis Ameyibor, made the call yesterday at a stakeholders’ engagement in Accra on the impact of counterfeit electrical products and electronic appliances on the country.
The CDA Consult’s campaign focuses on equipping public officials with basic information to recognise electrical counterfeit items at first sight, ensure that officials take stiffer actions against dealers in counterfeit electrical products, and equipping dealers to distinguish fake products from genuine ones.
Mr Ameyibor stressed that such products were contributing to the rampant fire outbreaks in the country, stressing it was time the dealers were brought to book.
He said the fire outbreaks leading to the loss of lives and property arising from the use of counterfeit electrical products and electronic appliances had prompted the CDA Consult to embark on a campaign across the regional capitals and selected district capitals to increase awareness on counterfeit goods to limit their negative effects on the national economy.
He said the sale and use of counterfeit electrical products and electronic appliances impeded development and created a huge financial loss for investors and the state, adding that most dealers in such products also evaded taxes.
Mr Ameyibor said CDA Consult was liaising with the Ghana National Fire Service, the Ghana Standards Authority, the electrical contractors, end users and the media to build a force against the proliferation of counterfeit electrical products and electronic appliances to “direct taste towards genuine electrical products”.
He, therefore, challenged stakeholders in the electrical product business to take up the fight to weed out counterfeiters from the system to protect the sector.
“The proliferation of counterfeit electrical products and electronic appliances is dangerous not only to human lives but also impedes and dents the image of genuine dealers in the sector,” Mr Ameyibor noted.
Mr Ameyibor said reducing the number of counterfeiters in the market environment would not only create a bigger space for genuine dealers but also save the nation monies that were lost as a result of those fake gadgets.
The CDA Consult’s executive director said in view of the threat posed by counterfeit electrical, productsthe CDA Consult had launched the “Avoid patronage of counterfeit electrical products and electronic appliances campaign” in Ghana.
The CDA Consult, in collaboration with the GSA, has embarked on the campaign to expose stakeholders and users to the danger associated with patronising counterfeit electrical products.
Mr Ameyibor, therefore, called for stakeholders, especially those doing genuine business, to collaborate with the CDA Consult and GSA to tackle the issue in a holistic manner to enable them to remain in business.
Giving an overview of the situation in the country, Mr Ameyibor said although there were no statistics to prove the amount of money the country lost annually due to counterfeiting, its prevalence was high.
“It is, therefore, necessary to come together as a team to create awareness and work together to reduce the impact.
“The public must be aware of the dangers of purchasing counterfeit electrical products by being informed that ‘if you buy counterfeit electrical products, you are buying your own death certificate” he said.
He said other countries had adopted systems to fight this harmful practice resulting in the decision of such perpetrators to relocate to areas where the systems were weak.
He also charged regulators to adopt pragmatic systems to police the market and collborate with dealers to protect the industry.