LAGOS CAUTIONS CONSUMERS ON UNWHOLESOME PRODUCTS
. Sets Up Consumers, Small Claim Courts To Prosecute Offenders
Amid rising cases of hazardous food products and other items found in Lagos markets, the Lagos State Consumer Protection Agency (LASCOPA) has warned consumers to be wary of products that have been tampered with, thus rendering them unsafe. The agency was established in 2018 to protect and ensure that consumers get value for their money.
To assist consumers get redress, through mediation and prosecution of errant manufacturers or service providers, the agency has put in place a consumers Court, as well as small Claim Courts.
General Manager of the agency, Mrs. Kemi Olugbode, disclosed this as fallout of two different exclusive reports of The Guardian on unwholesome fish in Lagos markets – Influx Of Fake Titus Fish Troubles Farmers, Marketers, which was a survey on influx of ‘counterfeit’ Mackerel fish, popularly called Titus fish in Lagos markets.
The second – Beware! Unwholesome Tilapia In Lagos Markets, an expository on unwholesome Tilapia fish, which are rejects from China and other countries currently sold in Ijora area of the state and which have found their way into other markets across the country, in addition to unwholesome practices by producers and other service providers.
Olugbode said many lives are at risk because of fake, adulterated and expired products, warning manufacturers, as well as service providers to desist from such unwholesome practices. “Customers are king and their rights must be respected at all time.”
While warning consumers to be careful what they buy, she advised that they should always read instructions and labels on products very well for expiry dates, to address incidences of tampering. Olugbode disclosed that a situation where consumers just buy products without proper check on the label for necessary life-saving information exposes them to danger. According to her, the few minutes consumers spend on checking products will go a long way to save life, as well as curtail unnecessary expenses and waste.
“Many lives are being shortened because of fake, adulterated and expired products often bought by consumers in error. Manufacturers, as well as service providers should desist from trampling on the rights of consumers. Customers are kings and their rights must be respected. “Consumers must not take laws into their hands, but recourse to the agency either online or at our Allen Office to seek redress,” she said.