As the rapid growth of e-commerce continues in Nigeria, President/CEO of Shoptomydoor, Nduka Udeh has called for a legislation that will protect the businesses and consumers in order to drive growth and boost opportunities.
According to Udeh, who spoke to Vanguard in an interview, the lack of legislation for the industry especially as regards consumer protection, has significantly affected the pace at which the industry is growing in the country.
“Government does not have a policy on e-commerce. Look at Consumer Protection Council, CPC for example. The legislation establishing the CPC, the last update on consumer protection, was in 1992. Till date, I don’t know of any updated consumer protection law that caters to e-commerce,” he said.
Giving an example on why it is important to have a legislation, Udeh said if a consumer buys items online, and it is not delivered, he should have a regulatory body that he can go to seek redress.
“If there is a law in place protecting the consumer, there will be an explosion in patronage in e-commerce. But because we don’t have that, a lot of people are scared. This is because the people are not sure that if they place any order that they will receive it or know what to do even if they receive it, but the item does not meet their standards.”
“These are some of the concerns that discourage people from embracing e-commerce. It is to counter some of these challenges that you see some of the companies like Jumia and Konga coming up with pay on delivery. Is it a good method? It is not. This is because it leads to high operating cost on the part of these businesses. It reduces their profit and it has lots of negative effects on them as a business, preventing them from expanding. But in Nigeria, it is there because the consumers do not trust the online platform,” he added.
He therefore called on the government to enact laws on e-commerce in support of a potential e-commerce boom in the country, which is dependent on the right, supportive policies.