BY AGENCY REPORT
There are strong indications that the Nigerian government has concluded plans to order telephone manufacturers in the country to disconnect over 12.6 million counterfeit phones.
It was learnt on Sunday that the decision was aimed at protecting consumer rights while boosting government and manufacturers’ revenues.
The Standards Organisation of Nigeria had earlier announced the disconnection plans, shortly after the Hewlett Packard’s Anti-counterfeiting Conference, held in Abuja two weeks ago.
SON had said that the switch-offs would be carried out using devices’ International Mobile Equipment Identity numbers. [eap_ad_2] The SON Director General, Dr. Joseph Odumodu, disclosed that more than N5bn ($30.7m) was spent on the importation of substandard mobile phones in Nigeria last year alone.
Odumodu, in April this year, said Nigeria had a mobile subscriber base of 126,958,904 users, of which 10 per cent – 12.6 million – use counterfeit phones.
According to Humanipo.com, Odumodu said switching off these counterfeit units would boost consumer rights protection, increase revenue for the government through taxes, as well as raise revenue for genuine mobile phone manufacturers.
He said, “As more countries switch off counterfeit phones, the people behind this scourge will keep moving to countries that are yet to adopt this solution, hence the urgent need to address the situation.
“Brand owners have to inscribe coded identification marks on original phones to ensure traceability and proper user’s guide.”
The director general had added that the switch-off would have the effect of improving mobile networks in Nigeria.[eap_ad_3]