SON ORDERS SEIZURE OF TOKUNBO TYRES NATIONWIDE
BY Franklin Alli
Standards Organisation of Nigeria has ordered the seizure of used tyres popularly called 'Tokunbos,' from markets across the country.
Also, a shredding factory for the recycling of used tyres will soon berth in Sagamu, Ogun State.
Head, Enforcement Department, Mr. Louis Njokwu, disclosed these when he supervised the burning of used tyres emptied from 60 trucks; the items were raided from Ladipo Market, Mushin in Lagos State.
'Used tyres are a product that kills, useless to the economy and pollute the environment. Yesterday, we offloaded 18 trucks and today are 42 trucks. The agency has a robust enforcement unit now, and we have instructed all our zonal offices at the various states of the federation to go round and seize all substandard tyres and we are going round to destroy them all over the country,' he said.
'We have seen a lot of blown tyres on the roads, and a lot of people who would have been productive to the country have been killed as a result of this. Used tyres are like second hand clothes. By the time you was it three times, the lapel is gone, and you can't wear it again, but if you can buy one quality shirt, it can last you for five years.
'In your car, if the four tyres and the spear are second-hands, I am assuring you in the next two months it is gone because the tyres you bought is poorly stuffed, the environmental condition has already destroyed it, they have already caked, and when you in flate them you see holes coming out of it.
'The realm and the side walls are already destroyed, and that is where the danger lies. Even new tyres if you stuff them you have already destroyed them, let alone old ones. So an enormous negative economic implication is associated with it,' he said.
Commenting on the shredding factory, he said: 'Some investors have been approaching us to establish a shredding factory here for used tyres, when they shred them, they separate the rubber from the iron, thread and that will generate employment and encourage investors to come in and establish tyres manufacturing plant like the Dunlop, and Michelin.
On the pullout of the organisation from the Ports, he replied: 'SON is a responsible government agency. If government asks us to leave, we will do just so.
'That doesn't mean we shouldn't do our work. We have told you earlier the enforcement department is being enhanced and is robust now. We will go to the warehouses, markets, wait on the roads to get people bringing in bad goods. We will get them and seize them.
'And this time around, we have gone beyond seizure and destruction of the goods; we will arrest people behind it and prosecute them. Already people have been arrested, they are in the custody of the police and the investigation is ongoing.'