16 December 2012

Uganda: Traders Fault UNBS On Fake Products

KAMPALA City Traders Association (KACITA) have asked the National Bureau of Standards (UNBS) to intensify their pre-inspection at entry points rather blaming them for importing counterfeits.

The traders during a meeting with the executive director, Dr. Ben Manyindo, the traders also accused UNBS officials for failure to carry out pre-inspection of goods that are imported.

"We are traders but we do not know which goods are fake or genuine, but it is not fair on our side when we import our goods and UNBS comes out to say that they are counterfeit, we don't know which good are not okay," one of the traders complained.

The meeting chaired by KACITA chairman Everest Kayondo and spokesperson Issa Sekiito.

The traders told UNBS officials that the system they are using to inspect should start with the manufacturers and checking the goods at the factories.

Sekitto said the association wants traders to maintain standards but want government to enforce and tighten standards of goods imported.

"We are not resisting the inspection but what we want is for UNBS to have centres where Uganda Revenue Authority is stationed," he added.

Manyindo, however, said their surveillance is weak due to lack of funds. Out of the 54 border entry points Uganda has, only 19 are under their control.

They have intensified sensitisation so consumers can differentiate a fake product from a genuine one.

"We hope that when people learn to identify fake products, the demand for them will fall. Someone will think twice before bringing the product if there is no market," Manyindo added.

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