Lagos State House of Assembly has passed a bill for a law to establish the Consumer Protection Agency and to provide for the protection of the interest of consumers into law.
The bill, which is Private Member Bill sponsored by the Speaker, Adeyemi Ikuforiji, had since been sent to the governor for his assent.
The bill, which scaled through the third reading states the objectives of the agency to include the right to be informed about the quality, quantity, potency, purity, standard and price of goods and services as the case may be so as to protect consumers against unfair trade practices.
On the functions of the agency, the bill stipulates that the agency will ensure the replacement of hazardous products with safe products and seek ways and means of eliminating hazardous products from the market in conjunction with the relevant government agencies.
“The agency will publish from time to time the list of products, the consumption and sale of which have been banned, withdrawn, restricted or not approved by the appropriate Federal Government Agencies”.
According to section 29 of the bill which states the enforcement of the agency, any person aggrieved by an order made by the agency may prefer an appeal against such order to the High Court within 30 days from the date of the order, provided that an appeal filed out of time may be entertained if the court is satisfied there is sufficient cause for filling out of time.
Convicted traders liable to compensate consumers for loss, that is if a trader is convicted of an offence under the new law, the agency may, on behalf of an aggrieved consumer who consents to the application, apply to the courts for an order or damage. [Vanguard]