9 November 2012

Zambia: Take Advantage of Consumer Tribunal, Cuts Urges Customers

THE Consumer Unity Trust Society (CUTS) has urged consumers in the country to take advantage of the Competition and Consumer Protection Tribunal (CCPT) to lodge complaints concerning unfair and uncompetitive trading practices by some business houses.

CUTS programmes officer Tommy Singongi said members of the public should make use of CCPT to report any complaint related to unfair trading practices and uncompetitive mergers.

Mr Singongi said the organisation was working with the Competition and Consumer Protection Commission (CCPC) to sensitise the business communities not to engage in uncompetitive business practices.

CCPT consists of a legal practitioner of not less than 10 years legal experience, who is the chairperson, a representative of the Attorney-General, who is the vice-chairperson, and three other members who are experts, with not less than five years' experience and knowledge in a relevant field.

These part-time members are appointed by the Minister of Commerce, Trade and Industry.

"We are working with CCPC in many areas such as sensitisation of the public and bringing to the attention of the commission any unfair trading practices the business houses engage in," Mr Singongi said.

He said competition needed to be encouraged if national development was to be achieved, adding that there was need to avoid the springing up of monopolies in the country by encouraging fair competition.

Mr Singongi said CUTS would next year embark on a project which would seek to redefine trade and development-related priority areas through better participation of all the economic actors in the country.

He said the project would be implemented in collaboration with Civil Society for Poverty Reduction Zambia.

Mr Singongi said the agenda would aim at contributing to meaningful development and reduction of poverty, which he said would link the organisation to the grassroots where poverty seemed to be rampant.

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