SON sets to standardise measurement accuracy for Nigerian products

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(Last Updated On: 2016-05-31)

Stories: ABOLAJI ADEBAYO

Standards Organisation of Nigeria, SON, has started the effort towards standardizing measurement accuracy in all the goods produced in Nigeria in compliance with the internally acceptable measurement standards. It was revealed that lack of accuracy in the standard measurements of most of the Nigerian products led to their rejection in the international market. It was also revealed that the inaccuracy in the measurements was due largely to unavailability of laboratory to certify the international measurement standard of products coming from the country.

In order to achieve this feat, the Organisation has concluded its plan to complete the Nigeria’s National Measurement Institute, NMI, which would harbour standard laboratory by the end of this year, where the measurements of all goods in the country would be certified before being exported.

Speaking at the 2016 World Metrology Day, organised by SON with the theme “Measurements in a Dynamic World”, the Acting Director General of the Agency, Paul Angya, reflected on the vision of some countries to facilitate smooth trade among the various countries, and as such came together to sign a treaty on global measurement standards on May 20th, 1875.
He added that the vision of that treaty has urged the SON to facilitate the establishment of NMI to reform the Nigeria’s industrial manufacturing and commercial trades among various countries of the world.
He said the accuracy in measurement is a key factor that enhances quality of products, noting that insensitivity to this factor has contributed majorly to the rejection of Nigerian products by the foreign customers.

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In his presentation, the Director, Metrology and Instrumentation, SON, Engr. Obiora Manafa said the NMI, when established, would eliminate the incidence of inaccurate and short measures in trade, manufacturing. export and import activities in Nigeria.
He said, “In order to ensure accuracy of measurements in the country, SON in collaboration with UNIDO earnestly set in motion, the establishment of a National Metrology Institute, NMI, which will be the custodian of National Measurement Standards with the highest measurement reference in the country through traceability to the SI unit.

The NMI will be responsible for the dissemination of measurement standards and provide traceability and accuracy of measurement to the industries, laboratories, trade and commerce, aviation, oil and gas, agriculture, health, education, automotive, mining, power and other sectors of the economy.”

Analyisng further, , Manafa said the functions of the Institute would include custody, development and maintainance of the National Measurement Standards; declaration of the country’s calibration and measurement capability, CMC, at the BIPM; participation in international inter-comparisons and organizing (together with the national Accreditation Body) the national comparison; development of metrology in the country by means of training, education and updating of staff of NMI and other calibration bodies to innovations in metrology; promotion and representation of the country in international and regional organisations such as Metre Convention, CIPM-MRA.

He further said that the establishment of the NMI would boost the country’s export base by providing the required confidence and reliability in the export goods; improve the health of the citizens and ensure safe environment by providing accuracy in measurement; guarantee accurate and reliable measurements for the country.
He further hinted that it would ensure level playing field for commerce, control frauds and support global trade in measuring instrument, while also strengthening other components of the National Quality Infrastructure such as standardization, accreditation, certification and testing.

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Meanwhile, Manafa assured that the Nigeria’s National Measurement Institute would be the best among the ECOWAS countries and a reference point by others. He maintained that since it would be a continuous exercise, the maintenance of the institute is guaranteed.

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