The Communication for Development and Advocacy Consult (CDA Consult), a non-governmental advocacy group, has outlined its 2019 measures to intensify the National Campaign against patronage of counterfeit electrical products and electrical appliances.
The upscale National Anti-Counterfeit Campaign seeks to inculcate in industry professionals as well as consumers the need to protect themselves from counterfeit electrical products.
Speaking at a stakeholder’s workshop in Accra, Francis Ameyibor – CDA Consult Executive Director, noted that the campaign’s intensification will target professionals in the electrical industry and other stakeholders, including the Police, Fire Service, Distributors, Dealers, and Importers.
The stakeholders included representatives of Electrical Dealers, Manufacturers, Electrical Shop Attendants, Security Personnel, Officials from the Fire Service and media practitioners, among others.
Mr Ameyibor commended in particular Professor Alex Dodoo, GSA Director General; and Mrs Gladys Bennett, Manageress of Glamossay Hotel in Sunyani; and Mr Vijay Gokaldas, Chief Executive Officer of Services Merchandise Limited for their individual commitment and support to the national anti-counterfeit campaign in 2018.
He noted that it is only targetted and concerted efforts, involving manufacturers, governments and organisations, that can prevent the counterfeiters’ market from thriving. Through joint efforts championed by the CDA Consults, which involved the Ghana Standards Authority (GSA), the Ghana Police Service, Ghana National Fire Service and other non-state actors, the national anti-counterfeiting educational campaign started in 2017 and has helped professionals to understand the dangers of counterfeit electrical products.
“The CDA Consult Executive Director noted that, in spite of the tremendous strides, Serious work is still needed to share best practices and encourage collaboration, to combat counterfeiting among state and non-state actors.
“In 2019, CDA Consult is engaging stakeholders to organise four major anti-counterfeit educational workshops, engage media practitioners, and distribute flyers and posters as well as other public advocacy campaigns to warn consumers about the dangers of counterfeit products.
The CDA Consult educational campaign seeks to raise awareness about the dangers of counterfeit electrical products and electronic appliances in the constantly-evolving fight against counterfeiters,” he said.
Mr. Ameyibor said CDA Consult will continue to engage the services of professionals, including the GSA, to educate stakeholders on the latest anti-counterfeiting practices, and empower electrical industry professionals on how to build confidence in their ability to properly avoid and report counterfeits – thus helping to keep themselves, employees and work environments protected.
He said counterfeiters rely on deception and pegging prices below market levels to attract consumers, and so they are able to penetrate “our homes, business environments, and commercial and industrial facilities”.
“The more sophisticated counterfeiters become, the more difficult it is to identify counterfeit products; so, the best way to avoid counterfeit electrical products is to purchase products from the manufacturer’s authorised distributors or retailers,” he said.
Mr. Ameyibor said: “If every individual along a product’s supply chain plays an active role in stopping counterfeit products from being bought and sold, the demand for counterfeit electrical products will decrease.
“Reducing the spread of counterfeit electrical products and electronic appliances can help to ensure maximum electrical safety protection in Ghana.”
The CDA Consult had held a series of nationwide public education initiatives, dubbed ‘Avoid Patronage of Counterfeit Electrical Products and Electronic Appliances’, which started in 2017.
Under the initiative, stakeholders are assisted to identify counterfeit electrical products on the market, expose dangers associated with patronage of counterfeit electrical products, and create a platform for security operatives to enforce laws against the sale of counterfeit products in the country.
Mr Ameyibor, explained that proliferation of counterfeit electrical products in the country is on the increase, and as a nation we need concerted efforts to deal with the problem.
“Ghana is gradually becoming a fertile market for counterfeit electrical products. We need a national crusade to fight the proliferation of counterfeit electrical products. We must all join the holistic crusade to sensitise the public against usage of counterfeit electrical products.
The use of counterfeit electrical products is a major contributor to the rampant fire outbreaks in the country,” he added.
The stakeholders used the occasion to renew their commitment and support for the campaign.