…As Heritage Bank partners NIMASA on global maritime safety standards***
The Standards Organisation of Nigeria (SON) has sealed up 20 business outfits in Ekiti over poor quality products offenses.
The Head of SON in Ekiti, Mr Ayeni Feyisayo disclosed this on Monday in Ado Ekiti, during a sensitisation seminar titled: “The Importance of Quality and Globalization of Small and Medium Scale Entrrprises”, an event held to mark the 2018 World Standard Day in the state
Fisayo said over 100 enterprises were under SON’s close watch, promising that its dragnet might fall on them anytime soon if they failed to turn a new leaf.
He said SON would not compromise on its standards and warned manufacturers and producers of edible items to abide by the rules of living up to the oath of their certification.
“The 20 businesses that are shut down are just the few that we have sealed-off since the beginning of this year, the figure could have been more, all we did was to apply human face and see if more than 100 others under our watch will see reason and follow our standard rules.
“We have made them to understand that the fact that your business had once been certified does not guarrantee that it will not be re-visited for purpose of re-certification, the implication of this is that you don’t think all is over, and that you can reduce quality of your products.
“That is why in SON, we do make sure we have minimum of four visitations, most of which are either unannounced or unscheduled.
“We do no want the public to miscontrue our actions as basically punitive, hence the need to first give opportunity window to some of them to correct errors or improve on the quality of their products, so that in the end, we will be seen as corrective than punitive
“All we are doing is to ensure that the quality and taste of life of the consumers are geometrically increased, and only companies that can supply these needs will continue to dominate”, he said.
Meanwhile, the Heritage Bank PLC and the Nigerian Maritime Administration and Safety Agency (NIMASA) have joined forces to educate stakeholders about the maritime enforcement global benchmarks.
The Divisional Head, Cooperate Communication of Heritage bank, Mr Fela Ibidapo, said this in a statement made available to newsmen in Lagos on Monday.
According to him, the training session, with the theme: “Maritime Enforcement Safety: Current Global Benchmarks”, had representatives of both organizations in attendance.
He said that other participants include: Nigerian Navy, Nigerian Ports Authority, Lagos State Safety Council, Nigeria Shippers Council, Marine Insurers, Maritime & Dockworkers Safety Inspector and Marine Police.
Addressing participants at the workshop held at the NIMASA’s Head office, Mr Victor Amakwe, Group Head, Private Banking, Private Wealth Management, Heritage Bank; said that Heritage Bank understood the importance of health safety.
Amakwe said that health safety also implied that every working environment or workplace was kept in an organised, uncluttered, and hazard-free condition.
According to him, the benefits of doing so are far-reaching and affect not only workers’ safety but also their health and productivity.
“Improvements in worker health and productivity, in turn, leads to lower operating costs thereby providing benefits to both the workers and the employer,” he stated.
Amakwe commended the management of NIMASA for its commitment to the enthronement of global best practices in the provision of maritime services in Nigeria.
He said that NIMASA was ensuring effective maritime safety administration using modern tools that guaranteed efficiency and effectiveness toward developing indigenous capacity and tackling hindrances on our waterways.
He said that Heritage Bank would continue to support and partner NIMASA on its drive for maritime safety and enforcement.
In his speech, Dr Dakuku Peterside, the Director-General of NIMASA, acknowledged that the mandate of his organisation was to ensure that any vessel using Nigeria’s waterways, both onshore and offshore, became safety conscious.
According to him, as a safety administrator, NIMASA cannot be enforcing safety when it is not operating in a safety environment.
He emphasised that the safety standards were globally set and managed for the benefit of all nations.
Peterside noted that unlike before, there had been tremendous improvement in the way NIMASA staff members and other stakeholders in the maritime sector adopted the global safety standards.
According to him, there is room for improvement; “We are itching closer to it every day,” he stated.
The NIMASA boss explained that the workshop was organised to promote a culture of safety in operations of all stakeholders, for self-examination of each operation environment, and to evaluate the global best practices.
“In NIMASA we are determined to give you every support you require to ensure a new culture is put in place in our workplaces,” he said.