SON Workers Protest Over Alleged Poor Welfare

Workers protest at the Abuja office of Standard Organisation of Nigeria (SON) on Tuesday, May 14, 2019. PHOTO: Sodiq Adelakun/Channels TV

 

Members of the Standard Organisation of Nigeria (SON) on Tuesday staged a protest at the Federal Capital Territory, Abuja.

The workers carrying various placards assembled at the entrance of the SON headquarters.

According to the workers, the protest is against alleged cases of corruption, poor staff welfare, and non-payment of entitlements.

READ ALSO: Picketing: TCN Workers Clash With Protesting TUC Members

The workers under the umbrella body of the amalgamated union of public corporations, civil service technical and recreational services employees are demanding the immediate approval and implementation of better conditions of service at the agency.

They also claim illegal promotion of some directors and are calling for the intervention of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) and Independent Corrupt Practices and Other Related Crimes (ICPC) into the operations of the organisation.

They alleged that the Director-General of SON, Osita Aboloma, has refused to obey the directive of the Federal Ministry of Labor and Employment on voluntarism.

The head of public relations at SON, Dipo Fashina, in reaction says the issues raised by the workers is being addressed.

He added that the budgetary allocation has been provided in the 2019 budget to settle all outstanding allowances.

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SON Arraigns Four For Alleged Illegal Production Of Engine Oil

SON Arraigns Four For Alleged Illegal Production Of Engine Oil

 

The Standards Organisation of Nigeria (SON) has arraigned four men before Justice Oluremi Oguntoyibo at the Federal High Court in Lagos, for allegedly producing and selling substandard and adulterated engine oil.

The accused persons, Uche Johnson, Olaide Shittu, Kingsley Meteke and Abdulquadri Olayinka, were alleged to have adulterated 128 drums and 9.45 litres of engine oil, and charged with four counts of production, possession, dealing in and distribution of substandard engine oil.

The defendants pleaded not guilty to the charges and claimed that the products were good for public consumption and for optimum engine performance, which the prosecution said was false.

The counsel to SON said the defendants indulged in production of engine oil which did not meet mandatory industrial standards and the offence contravened the provisions of sections 1(8) and 1(8)(II) of the Miscellaneous Offences Act, 2004.

The prosecutor urged the court to fix a date for trial to enable it produce its witnesses to establish its case against the defendants.

The defence counsel informed the court of a bail application filed on behalf of the defendants and urged the court to grant them bails on liberal terms.

Justice Oluremi Oguntoyibo ordered that they be remanded in prison custody pending ruling on their bail application and adjourned until March 19 for ruling on the bail application.

She, thereafter, fixed May 2, 7 and 9 for trial.

Father Gets 16 Years For ‘Monstrous’ Acid Attack On Son

Vice Principal Gets Life Imprisonment For Raping 12-Year-Old In Ekiti
File Photo

 

A father was on Wednesday jailed for 16 years for planning a “monstrous” acid attack on his three-year-old son, which left the child “scarred for life”.

Five other men were also convicted over the attack which prosecutors say was an attempt by the father to show that his mother was unfit to take care of the little boy.

Passing sentence, Judge Robert Juckes said “even battle-hardened crown court judges were sickened when they heard the news that someone had attacked a three-year-old with sulphuric acid,” said Juckes, calling it a “monstrous breach of trust”.

The 40-year-old father, originally from Afghanistan, provided “obviously strong acid” and was the “the instigator and planner” of the attack, he said.

Prosecutors say the man, who has not been named to protect the identity of his son, was motivated by his wife walking out on him in 2016 and hired the other guilty men to attack the child at a shop in the city of Worcester in central England.

The attack happened in July 2018, when Adam Cech squirted acid at the boy, who was in a pushchair, from a small plastic bottle.

The victim’s mother said in a victim statement that “my son is OK, he’s a happy child, but he’s been scarred for life and will need continuous support”.

Khashoggi’s Son Leaves Saudi Arabia – HRW

A handout picture provided by the Saudi Press Agency (SPA) on October 23, 2018, shows Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman meeting with family members of slain journalist Jamal Khashoggi in Riyadh. The Saudi rulers met with Khashoggi’s son Salah. Handout / SPA / AFP

 

The son of murdered Saudi journalist Jamal Khashoggi, Salah, and his family have left the Gulf kingdom after the government lifted a travel ban, Human Rights Watch said on Thursday.

“Salah and his family are on a plane to (Washington) DC now,” Sarah Leah Whitson, HRW’s executive director for the Middle East and North Africa, told AFP.

AFP

APC Leader, Tinubu Loses Son

Tinubu A Shining Star In Nigeria's Political Firmament - Ajimobi
file photo: APC National Leader, Bola Tinubu

The national leader of the ruling All Progressives Congress (APC), Bola Tinubu, has lost one of his sons.

The son, Jide, was gathered to have died in the early hours of today, November 1.

Although details of the death are still sketchy, APC chieftains are already sending condolences to Tinubu over the tragic loss.

Speaker, House of Representatives, Honourable Yakubu Dogara, in a statement on Wednesday said the news of the death came as a rude shock.

He said: “I commiserate with our national leader, Senator Bola Ahmed Tinubu over the demise of his son Jide.

“I was shocked to receive the sad news of the sudden death of Jide Tinubu. The late Jide was a lawyer of high repute who cut his teeth in the maritime sector and was hardworking and enterprising.”

“It is saddening that a father buries his son. I can only imagine your pain and grief at this time.

“I pray God Almighty to grant you and your family the fortitude to bear the irreparable loss,” the Speaker added.

SON Arrests Suspected Dealer Of Expired Items

The Standards Organisation of Nigeria has arrested a suspected dealer of expired household items stocked in two buildings in Kirikiri, Lagos.

The arrest was carried out on Saturday through the collaborative effort of operatives of the agency and the Nigeria Police Force.

The arrest followed the discovery of a twin three-storey building by SON, belonging to Julf Ventures Nigeria Ltd in March 2017, stocked with imported expired items whose expiry dates were distorted.

Following a tip-off, the agency discovered another two separate buildings found with expired domestic consumables with altered dates in the suburbs of Kirikiri, said to be owned by the same company.

Briefing reporters after the arrest, the Director-General of SON, Osita Aboloma, who was represented by the Director of Inspectorate and Compliance, Bede Obayi, described the act as disheartening.

He noted that the agency would ensure they trace the substandard products that had already left the warehouse.

“We acted on the intelligence we received from well-meaning Nigerians. You can see the volume of expired products here and imagine their implications on our society in terms of health issues.

“When somebody buys expired cream, what does it show? You are applying cream that the active ingredient had gone and that may cause reactions on the skin.

“We promise Nigerians that we will carry out investigation and ensure that the products that have left the warehouse to different shops all over the country are properly traced and withdrawn from circulation.

“Due to the support of other regulatory agencies and the Nigeria Police Force, we were able to discover two other warehouses belonging to the same company based on a tip-off,” Aboloma said.

He commended the Lagos State government for its prompt response in sealing up the entire building to prevent further circulation of the products.

The Director of Investigation and Enforcement, National Agency for Food and Drug Administration and Control (NAFDAC), Mr Kingsley Ejiofor, condemned the act which he described as “illicit trade by unscrupulous Nigerian importers”.

The NAFDAC official, however, lauded the SON and Police for arresting the importer and solicited for more support to tackle the influx of fake and substandard goods into the country.

Osinbajo To Launch MSME Clinic In Kwara

MSME Clinic, Yemi Osinbajo, KwaraActing President of Nigeria, Professor Yemi Osinbajo, is set to launch a three-day Micro Small and Medium Enterprises (MSME) clinic on Thursday, February 23 for viable enterprises in Ilorin, the Kwara State capital.

Recall that Acting President Osinbajo commissioned the Aba MSME clinic on January 26.

Aba is the commercial hub of Abia State in southeast Nigeria.

The Chief Operating Officer of the Kwara State MSME Bureau, Mr Segun Soewu, who made the disclosure in a statement on Monday, informed that the event would hold at the Banquet Hall, Ilorin by 10:00AM daily.

He described the clinic as an opportunity for MSME operators in the state to discuss the opportunities and challenges confronting their businesses.

The MSME Bureau boss added that business owners can also make inquiries about policies and regulations regarding their businesses from the Federal agencies that would be present at the programme.

He listed the agencies to include the Standard Organisation of Nigeria (SON), Federal Inland Revenue Services (FIRS), Corporate Affairs Commission (CAC), Nigerian Investment Promotion Commission, Nigeria Export Promotion Council, Nigerian Export-Import Bank and National Agency for Food and Drug Administration and Control (NAFDAC).

Others are Small and Medium Enterprises Development Agency of Nigeria (SMEDAN), Industrial Training Fund (ITF), Bank of Agriculture, Bank of Industry, Federal Institute of Industrial Research, Oshodi (FIIRO), Projects Development Institute, Raw Materials Research and Development Council, and the National Agency for Science and Engineering Infrastructure.

Mr Soewu asked intending participants to contact the office of the Chief Operating Officer of the Kwara State MSME Bureau at the Ministry of Commerce and Cooperatives, Gambari Road in Ilorin.

 

S.O.N Seals Off Mobile Phone Shops In Abuja

S.O.N Seals Off Mobile Phone Shops In Abuja Its end of the road for dealers of fake mobile telephones in Nigeria’s Federal Capital Territory, Abuja as officials of Standards Organization of Nigeria (SON) have begun sealing off shops that sell substandard handsets.

The Assistant Chief of Standards at the agency, Mr Mamza Irimiya, who led the operation, advised mobile phone marketers to desist from selling phones that are not of standard.

During the operation, officials of the Standards Organizations of Nigeria interrogated some of the traders and asserted that the phones had health and environmental implications.

Although some of the shop owners disagreed with their claims, from one shop to another, they moved, determined to seal as many shops perceived to have erred.

Their action met resistance from some shop owners who asked the SON to beam its searchlight on the companies that supply them the phones and not vendors in this market.

This scenario reoccurred at different markets but the SON officials were not deterred as more seizures were made.

Meanwhile, the SON has said that further investigation would be conducted on the seized goods, before the sealed shops are reopened.

SON Confiscates 1,000 Bags Of Underweighted Rice In Osogbo

Customs, Plastic Rice,At least 1,000 underweighted bags of rice have been confiscated in Osogbo the capital of Osun State by Standards Organisation of Nigeria (SON).

The organisation said the seizure of the bags of rice at different markets in Osogbo was part of control measures mechanisms.

The State Coordinator of SON, Mr Sunday Badewole, gave the figure while addressing reporters in Osogbo on Tuesday.

Mr Badewole said the agency made the confiscation during the enforcement operation where more than 1,000 bags of five kilogramme, 10kg and 25kg were confiscated.

He said many of the rice sellers had reduced the quantity of rice from the kilogrammes that were indicated on the bags, to make more money.

Stolen Quantity Repackaged

Badewole said the observation carried out by the enforcement team of the agency in the markets during the raid revealed that rice sellers would remove some measures from the bags of rice and seal it back for sale.

He said the quantities removed would thereafter be repackaged in another bag, sealed and sold to buyers.

Badewole said the rice sellers confessed that they used to buy empty rice bags from Lagos to repackage the quantities that was stolen from the original bags.

“Based on the information from our operations directorate headquarters that underweighted bags of rice were in circulation, we went to the market with our scale.

“But it is very unfortunate that many of these small bags of rice have been reduced by the sellers to make more gain,” he said.

Badewole said all the shops where the underweighted rice were found had been sealed and put on hold.

He, however, said the confiscated bags of rice would not be destroyed but rather it would be rectified, a process that would be carried out by the sellers under the supervision of SON’s enforcement unit.

“Since the intention is not to further destroy the economic strength, the option we will probably put forward is rectification and fine.

“That is, we will ensure that all the bags of rice that were tampered with are filled up to the normal kilogrammes under our supervision, before they are put up for sale, because that is what the standard says,” he said.

Badewole said any rice seller that refuses to carry out rectification would forfeit all the underweighted rice to SON.

He noted that the exercise was a continuous one, and warned rice sellers against shortchanging people.

“I want to warn rice sellers to always ensure that their bags contain the right quantity of the produce.

“They should stop deceiving people and allow people to have value for their money,” he said.

Badewole, who highlighted that the raids would soon be carried to all the supermarkets in the state, said the organisation would not relent in its efforts at sanitising the system.

Digital Switch-Over: BON Chairman Initiates Stakeholders’ Meeting

BON Chairman Meets With Information MinisterAhead of the June 2017 deadline for digital switch-over, the federal government is hoping to facilitate a meeting of players in the broadcast industry to resolve issues affecting digitization in the country.

During a meeting with the Minister of Information, Lai Mohammed in Abuja, the Chairman of the Broadcasting Organisations of Nigeria (BON), Mr John Momoh, suggested that the meeting be held to aggregate the challenges affecting digitization and proffer solutions to them.

He told Channels TV that the digital switch-over was on course but there were gray areas that need to be resolved.

He said: “He (Minister) has an ear to the ground and knows what he is doing as regards the digital switch-over and he welcomed the idea of a stakeholders’ meeting which I put forward.

“The stakeholders’ meeting will be such that will get (together) people like the fiber companies, the broadcasters, the platform carriers, signal distributor, content aggregators and producers as well as the Standard Organisation of Nigeria (SON) who should actually be one of the stakeholders since they monitor the kind of setup boxes that would be manufactured in the country.

“We will all come to the table and address the issues confronting the DSO.”

The Minister admitted that the meeting was necessary and should be held regularly until the target date.

He hoped that the meeting would be called soon as it would “not only discuss issues that are strategic and important to the process”.

“We are talking about channels owners, setup box manufacturers, the distributors, the aggregators; everybody.

“We need to meet regularly so that as we move forward, we would ensure nobody is left behind,” the Minister said.

Buhari Appoints New Heads For 13 FG Agencies

Muhammadu-Buhari-UNGeneral-AssemblyPresident Muhammadu Buhari on Monday approved the appointments of Chief Executives for 13 Federal Government agencies.

A list of the new Chief Executives was contained in a statement by the Director of Press in the Office of the Secretary to the Government of the Federation (OSGF), Bolaji Adebiyi.

The appointments are:

Joseph Ari, Director-General, Industrial Training Fund (ITF).

Dr. Isa Ibrahim, Director-General, National Information Technology Development Agency (NITDA).

Simbi Wabote, Executive Secretary, Nigerian Content Monitoring Board.

Aboloma Anthony, Director-General, Standards Organisation of Nigeria (SON).

Mamman Amadu, Director-General, Bureau of Public Procurement.

Sharon Ikeazor, Pension Transitional Arrangement Directorate.

Princess Akodundo Gloria, National Coordinator, New Partnership for Africa’s Development.

Mr Ahmed Bobboi, Executive Secretary, Petroleum Equalisation Fund.

Umana Okon Umana, Managing Director, Oil and Gas Free Zone Authority.

Sa’adiya Faruq, Federal Commissioner, National Commission for Refugees, Migrants and Internally Displaced Persons.

Usman Abubakar, Chairman, Nigeria Railway Corporation (NRC).

Dr. Bello Gusau, Executive Secretary, Petroleum Technology Development Fund (PTDF).

Yewande Sadiku, Executive Secretary, National Investment Promotion Commission (NIPC).

SON Acting DG Decries Absence Of Agency At Ports

SON, Standards OrganizationThe Acting Director General of the Standards Organization of Nigeria, SON, Dr. Paul Angya, says the absence of the agency at the various ports in the country has destroyed the economy, made local industries unattractive and created a lot of unemployment among the youths.

Dr. Angya was speaking to journalists at the Governor’s Lodge in Amawbia, when he paid a visit to Anambra State Governor, Willie Obiano.

The visit was ahead of the one-day sensitization seminar organized by SON to enlighten the local population, SMEs, and big industrial holdings and manufacturers on the benefits of application of standards to their production processes and products.

He said that several representations have been made to the federal government through the supervising Ministry of Trade and Investment and through the National Assembly to ensure the return of SON to the ports.

This according to him would help curb the overwhelming importation of sub-standard products into the country.

He said that response has come from the National Assembly through a visitation to the agency’s facilities but hopes were thin on the possibility of immediate reversal of the decision by the federal government due to issues of bureaucracy.