In the bid to ensure competitiveness of local products in the international market, the Standards Organisation of Nigeria (SON) has mandated manufacturers of made in Nigeria products to undergo compulsory product certification .

The compulsory product certification, which is under the Mandatory Conformity Assessment Programme, is expected to commence immediately in SON offices across the nation.

Director General/Chief Executive of SON, DrJoseph Odumodu made the announcement in Abuja at the flag-off of “The walk for standards” held to mark the 2014 World Standards Day.

Dr Odumodu, represented at the event by the Director of Operations, Mr Nelson Adebiyi said the compulsory product certification was in tune with SON’s efforts to promote the competitiveness of made in Nigeria products and in line with the theme of this year’s celebration ” Standards level the playing field”

The SON CEO who urged all local manufacturers and assemblers to ensure that their products are certified hinted that the process was designed to assist them implement the requirements of relevant standards from raw materials to the finished product with a view to offering quality products that offer value for money to consumers.

He said the certification would also ensure that locally manufactured products are subjected to similar conformity process like the imported products undergo with the Standards Organisation of Nigeria Conformity Assessment Programme ( SONCAP), though creating a level playing field as stated in the theme of 2014 World Standards Day celebrations.

Dr Odumodu said the “walk for standards”, in addition to providing opportunities for interaction among stakeholders is also aimed at propagating the ideals of quality through strict adherence to standards by manufacturers, as well as protection of the consumers through the zero tolerance to substandard products initiative of SON.

The World Standards Day is being celebrated on October 14 every year and is coordinated by three international standardisation bodies, namely International Organisation for Standardisation (ISO) , the international Telecommunication Union(ITU) and the International Electro technical Commission ( IEC).

However, SON, as the Nigerian representatives of these bodies through its membership of the ISO has the responsibility to propagate the joint message of the organisations and generally promote standardisation activities in Nigeria, in line with its mandate.