The Member of Parliament for Shama and Vice-Chair on the Trade and Industry Committee Mr Ato Panford has called Parliament to empower Ghana Standard Authority to prevent importation of sub-substandard products into the country especially electrical gadgets and cables.
He made the call when he presented a statement before the House on Tuesday March 19, 2019.
The importation of sub-standard cables he lamented has generated preventable problems.
Supporting the call, the First Deputy Speaker of Parliament and MP for Bekwai, Joseph Osei Owusu indicated that, it’s the character of some businessmen to import sub-standard goods despite the risks associated with them.
He said, importers who import such inferior goods know the goods they import are of poor quality but are willing to compromise officials of the ports to have their goods cleared and later sell same at premium price.
He stressed on the point where people charge employers huge sums of money but purchase sub-standard goods to executive work for them.
According to him, custom officers sometimes allow themselves to be compromised and allowed people to bring in low quality products into the country.
He wondered why importers would be allowed to have their inferior goods on the market and later be chased by these same authorities for trading in such products.
The Minority Leader, Haruna Iddrisu on his part called on the House to review the Legislation of 1973 because it is out-dated- so it will reposition the Ghana Standards Authority (GSA) as a quality standard institution to support the country.
Mr Iddrisu called on the Finance Ministry to wean off the GSA so it will stand on its own since it is capable of generating its own resources to work.
The Speaker of Parliament Aaron Mike Oquaye in ruling on the matter referred statement to the Trade and Industry Committee to work on it and also make available full details of the statement to the legal department of Parliament for assessment.
A nationwide surveillance conducted by GSA) in 2017 last revealed that more than 70 per cent of all imported electrical cable brands on the market were substandard and could cause fires.
Out of 22 electrical cable brands sampled for laboratory testing, only two, which were manufactured locally, passed the critical safety requirement test for conductor resistance at the GSA Cable Laboratory in Accra.
The test showed that 20 of the brands, all imported products, were not designed or test-approved to meet the requirements in safety standards.
Per the test conducted, 19 out of the 20 imported brands of electrical cables failed the critical safety requirement for conductor resistance and this is dangerous because such cables can cause fires.
As part of the exercise, 22 brands of electrical cables were purchased from the market in Accra for laboratory tests to prove their authenticity. Out of the number, two were locally manufactured brands and the remaining 20 were imported ones.