SON vows to checkmate quacks in management system practice
The Standards Organisation of Nigeria (SON) has started plans to eradicate quacks involved in management system practice in the country.
The Director General of SON, Mallam Farouk Salim said during a one-day stakeholders’ engagement for the National Register for Conformity Assessment Practitioners (NRCAP) in Lagos on Thursday
Salim said the move would put an end to unscrupulous individuals who shortchange companies and individuals.
According to him, the quacks lacked the required competency to operate in the management system space.
Salim stated that conformity assessment practice was central to the sustenance of commercial success and continuity in all sectors.
He said that management systems practitioners were vital to ensuring that practices carried out by the industries are in alignment with international best practice in terms of the expectations of existing conformity assessment standards.
In his words: “It is in view of the importance of the authenticity and traceability of products and services to meet the requirements of relevant Nigerian Industrial Standards and other approved specifications,
“SON seeks to pursue the implementation of, Part II, Section 4(d) and Part III, Section 5 of the SON Act No.14 of 2015.
“Via the operation of the NRCAP scheme, in order to establish a directory of verified and registered Conformity Assessment Practitioners in Nigeria for all laboratories, Management system Consultants, Training Service Providers, Certification bodies, inspection bodies, inspectors, auditors and assessors.”
He stated that the lack of regulation of the activities of practitioners over the years has negatively impacted the industry and country significantly.
He listed the other impact to include poor protection of genuine practitioner, unhealthy competition, poor visibility and recognition of genuine and competent practitioners capable of attracting patronage.
Others are poor value for money for unsuspecting customers patronising quacks who deliver poor services.
Salim also stressed that lack of official register of competent practitioners to aid national planning and coordination of economic activities that border on standardisation and quality assurance was also a challenge.to the growth of the economy
“This engagement is guided by the strategic collaboration/partnership that SON shares with your various organizations over time, especially with the SON Management Systems Certification and Training Services departments with which you interface through your customers, of which you are expected to bring to bear, your wealth of experience to this national call,” he said.
The SON boss stated that the registration processes, including approved guidelines, expectations of benchmarking Conformity Assessment standards and interests while developing the documents, were taken into consideration to ensure that the impartiality of the process is assured.
He stressed that adequate training was given to the practitioners to boost their service delivery.
Earlier the First President of the Society for Management System Practitioners of Nigeria, Engr. Bode Oke, said the group would join hands with SON to prune quacks in the system in its bid to ensure that consumers get value for money spent.
“We are here to gain more knowledge and to join SON in the registration of all management system practitioners.
“We are going to partner with SON to ensure that the exercise is successful, because we have a lot of companies practicing management systems that are not trained and competent,” he warned.
“We are working together with SON to ensure that we remove all those incompetent people from the system so that whenever a client approaches practitioners for registration, the client will know that he will not be shortchanged and get value for the money spent,” he said.
He said the roles of system practitioners are vital in business growth and development, maintaining that system practitioners are responsible for taking companies through quality management systems certification, environmental management system certification, occupational health and safety certification and food management system certification.
“The International Organisation for Standardisation (ISO) have established standards for all management systems.
“And therefore, anyone that would lead companies to obtain these certification must be competent.
“And this is why SON is regulating all the auditors, consultants and even the certification bodies, because we have some certification bodies coming from outside the country that are not competent, so competency is the key word here,” he averred.
On her part, a Consultant in the Quality Management System Practice, Patricia Solarin, said standardisation was germane for industrial development,
“There are so many briefcase carrying consultants that are going around duping clients and most of these consultants did not even pass their audit test and examination.
” Without standardisation or regulations, it will be difficult to stop the quacks. A lot of companies are being shortchanged because people taking them through certification do not really know much.
“So SON is trying to register auditors and consultants which is a welcome development to ensure that people get value for their hard money spent,” she said.
She commended the leadership style of Mallam Farouk Salim for taken a bold strip to tackle the changed.
She said government should support SON to achieve greater feats.