The Standards Organisation of Nigeria (SON) says it has begun harmonising the production of ventilators developed across the country to conform with the international standards toward containing COVID-19 pandemic.
Its Director-General, Osita Aboloma, made this known in a statement on Wednesday in Lagos, following the unveiling of locally manufactured ventilators produced by Federal Polytechnic, Ilaro in Ogun.
Aboloma was represented by SON Coordinator, Ogun Office 1, Mr Jerome Umoru, at the unveiling.
The SON director-general urged various inventors to ensure compliance with ISO 5080601/2/12/3020 and Medical Electrical Equipment part 11 for clinical care.
According to him, adherence to the standard will ensure ease during the process of conformity assessment and product certification.
He added that the certification of locally produced ventilators, air purifiers and hand sanitiser machines would put the nation in its pride of place globally.
“We are partnering with the institute in ensuring that various machines produced in the country meet the required standards so as not to end up in the shelves,” Aboloma said.
He said the standards body of the unification was also aimed at saving the nation’s foreign exchange spent on importation of ventilators to fights against COVID-19.
Aboloma advised private sector investment in such innovations to enable inventors to go through the next stages of clinical trials and obtain the Nigerian Industrial Standard (NIS) mark.
He reiterated SON’s support toward sustaining local production of essential materials to fight the COVID-19 pandemic through quality assurance.
“In our efforts to address the ongoing pandemic, we have diligently assigned officers to inspect the ventilators and alcohol-based hand sanitisers under production.
“We have one common standard for each product. We want to ensure that what we are producing meets the standard and once it does, we will certify it.
“We will also continue to monitor activities so that they do not rest on their oars in producing quality goods.
“I have presented a copy of the Standard to the Rector of the Federal Polytechnic, Ilaro, and it is the ‘golden rule,” he said.
Aboloma promised that the moment the institute was able to meet the basic parameter on requirements, certification of the innovations would be fast tracked.
“SON is ready to partner with all technical institutions, especially those involved in the production of life saving equipment and materials at this time.
“This is so that their products will meet minimum requirements of the relevant Nigerian Industrial Standards (NIS), and undergo certification under the Mandatory Conformity Assessment Programme (MANCAP) scheme,” he said.
The SON director-general revealed that in no distant time, consumers would be empowered through product authentication scheme to determine the quality and conformance of products at the point of purchase.
He said that those without necessary certifications would be rejected.
Responding, the Rector, Olusegun Aluko, said that possible partnership with private sector could help boost the production of ventilators against the high cost of importation.
Aluko explained that the institution had also designed a disinfectant cubicle (just like the security screening cubicles at points of entry in banks).
He said this would disinfect anyone passing through it within a space of 20 seconds.
Aluko said that the invention was critical at a time when the government was planning to open up the economy.
He further showcased a handling room disinfecting machine produced by the institute.
The rector said it could conveniently be used to disinfect classrooms, offices, and banking halls.
He solicited for more government supports on the innovations to fight COVID-19 as well as boost the investors’ confidence.
“We also invented a multiple outlet of handwashing and sanitising machine.
“This will be useful in supermarkets, schools and other public places that accommodate crowds.
“We want patronage from different sectors to deploy the machines to the wellness of Nigerians,” the rector added.
Aluko noted that the materials for manufacturing the ventilators were sourced locally.
He said it would support the noble innovation and make it more accessible and cheaper compared to imported one’s which were scarce, costly and took longer to deliver. (NAN)