The Department of Weights and Measurements in the Federal Ministry of Industry, Trade and Investment in carrying out a weight and measures surveillance of some companies in Abuja on Tuesday, 6th of March 2018 has assured Nigerians that they will get the right quantity for every kobo spent on goods.
Leading the surveillance exercise was the Acting Director of the Department, Engineer Sidi Sada Mohammed who visited Dangote Cement Depot, Iju, Abuja; Julius Berger Plc Company; Nigerian Bottling Company, Abuja and many others.
Engineer Sidi Sada Mohammed said the essence of the exercise was to ensure that customers and consumers are given the right quantity of goods purchased. He further said that the surveillance was to ensure that Companies comply with the Weights and Measurements Act, 2004, which is line with international best practices.
At the Dangote Cement Depot, Idu, which was the first port of call, it was discovered that out five bags of Cement weighed, three bags weighed a little bit above 50kg which was the measure indicated on the Cement bag, while two under weighed.
The Julius Berger Plc company was also visited where the weigh bridge was inspected. It was discovered to be weighing accurately as required by stipulated standard of the weights and measurement Act of 2004.
However, the Nigerian Bottling Company Plc (NBC) was not receptive of the surveillance team. The Company officials claimed that they needed to obtain clearance from their head office in Lagos. However, the Weights and Measures Officials persisted.
During the inspection of the NBC, it was revealed that the Company was owing the Federal Government the statutory fee on their weights and measurements equipment since 2012, to the tune of 3.3Million Naira denying the Government due revenue.
The weighing equipment of the Company was also found to be non-functional. EngineerSada stated that the Permanent Secretary of the Ministry will be briefed so that the legal prosecution against the erring Company could commence.
The team went to the AUA PLAZA to check on the quality of rice sold in bags. A random sampling carried out, revealed some bags under weighing in the shops visited. In addition, the retailers said that the local rice is usually well bagged whilst foreign rice falls short.
OANDO Filling station at Wuse zone 6 was found to be under selling liquefied gas, because the weighing machine was over weighing by 3kgs, which reveals that customers will be short changed by 3kgs. Weights and Measures officials later sealed the gas plant.
Similarly, at the NNPC Mega-Filling station close to the OANDO, the officials found some dispensing pumps were under-dispensing below the required measure, the pumps were later sealed.
Engr. Sidi Sada, while speaking to the press, said that the exercise was a routine one, and it is to verify that organizations comply with the stipulated requirements under the law. Also it is to assure Nigerians that there is an agency of Government that they can seek redress from whenever they feel they are being cheated in terms of the quantity of the products purchased by them.
Yinka Sorinolu (SIO)
For DD (Press Unit)