NECA faults CPC’s alleged plans to prosecute organisations
THE Nigeria Employers’ Consultative Association (NECA) has decried alleged plans by the Consumer Protection Council (CPC) to embark on criminal prosecution of some corporate organisations.
Director General of NECA, Olusegun Oshinowo, explained at the weekend that while it is in order for the CPC to denounce any form of consumer rights abuses in any sector of the Nigerian economy, the power of prosecution, he added is outside the agency’s mandate. Oshinowo said: “The fact, however, is that prosecution of Companies for such lapses are outside the scope of the Agency’s roles as assigned to it by its enabling Act”.
According to Oshinowo, the CPC cannot on its own institute criminal prosecutions against Corporate Organizations in Nigeria, “Clearly, the CPC is pursuing an agenda of territorial mandate expansion by failing to acknowledge and respect the Acts that have conferred on other agencies of Government such as Nigerian Civil Aviation Authority (NCAA), Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC), National Agency for Food and Drug Administration and Control (NAFDAC), Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) and Standards Organization of Nigeria (SON), among others to regulate and protect Consumers’ rights within their various sectorial jurisdiction”.
He explained that in order to serve as an effective regulator and protector, competences and expertise is key. “The truth is that CPC lacks the competence to regulate and protect Consumers’ interest in Aviation, Communication, Banking, Manufacturing among others. “It should understand that Consumers’ right is not about ‘’civil rights activism’’ or ‘’aluta continua’’.
A more logical approach would be to work in partnership with existing specialized Agencies that have been set up in various sectors to ensure standards and delivery of quality service to Consumers”. Oshinowo added: ‘’At a time when the administration of President Goodluck Ebele Jonathan, is busy showcasing his track record to Nigerians in a bid for re-election, it is indeed shocking that CPC has thrown all restraints to the wind by parading itself as the bad poster boy of this administration.
We hope this Government will take the bold step to save the cost of governance by rationalizing Government Agencies with overlapping responsibilities. CPC is certainly one Agency that needs to be scrapped or re-positioned with competent, focused and altruistic leadership”.