The Director General Standard Organization of Nigeria (SON), Dr. Farouq Salim has disclosed that the organization is currently collaborating with the National Assembly to strengthen quality infrastructure.

The SON DG stated that collaborating with the National Assembly will strengthen the quality infrastructure such as equipping regional laboratories to bring the organisation’s services nearer to the stakeholders and make greater contributions to the diversification of the nation’s economy.

The DG, while speaking at a one-day capacity building workshop for journalists with the theme “Improved Synergy To promote Standardisation” in Lagos on Tuesday, informed that, already the capacity of the national metrology institute is already being enhanced with acquisition of new equipment for calibration activities in diverse areas of measurement

The DG also stated that the organization is committed to improving on its communication with stakeholders at all levels to get greater buy-in into its programmes and activities that are targeted at customer satisfaction, consumer protection and welfare as well as the positive growth of the nation’s economy.

He further informed that in the last 10 months since his assumption of duty, SON has interacted extensively with the different categories of stakeholders on how they can collectively take SON to the next level for the overall good of the Nigerian economy and the welfare of its people.

While adding that as part of efforts in that regard, an independent committee of distinguished Nigerians was charged with the responsibility of taking a critical look at the structure, processes, practices and service offerings as well as public perception.

He said this was in order to help the organisation develop a template to address operational, service delivery and staff welfare challenges as well as to entrench equity and fairness as well as provide greater opportunities for staff to better contribute to the attainment of organisational goals.

On the issue of curbing the influx and distribution of substandard and life-threatening products, he said the issue is being approached from many dimensions, noting that some of its staff have undertaken training programmes with the Nigeria Customs Service on the operations of the NICIS 11, he also said the organisation is also in discussion for a full integration into the process for operational access and control of son regulated imports.

While stressing that when fully achieved, it will assist the agency in preventing substandard products from entry into the country without any delay at the ports.

He informed that SON has invested in facilities near the Apapa, Tin Can and Onne ports where quality verification of suspected substandard products can be carried out, and added that SON already initiated engagements with key importers across the country to flush out the bad eggs amongst them and promote self-regulation in our collective interest.

Speaking on the importance of a journalist to a society or country, the DG describe journalists as the most important group next to the military as they can make or destroy a country with a single story, he noted that it is the job of journalists as vanguard of the nation through accurate investigative reportage.

He described journalists as partners in progress with SON in curbing substandard products from entering the country.