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Seal loopholes to keep off contraband goods, KEBS told

Kenya Bureau of Standards officials in Garissa have been challenged to seal all loopholes to
ensure that contraband goods do not enter the country.

According to Garissa county commissioner Meru Mwangi, failure to thoroughly
scrutinize products that are used or consumed by the residents exposes them to health risks.

Unscrupulous business men have always found ways to bring in contraband goods mostly
from Somalia. The goods which also include drugs lack the KEBS mark or have not gone
through the required standardization.

This has been blamed on the porous Kenya-Somali border which remains a big challenge
to security agencies.

Speaking Thursday at a local hotel during a one-day public participation workshop that
was organized by KEBS, Mwangi said that there was need for all government agencies to not
only speak with one voice but to also work together closely to ensure residents get quality
services.

At the same time, the county commissioner warned those involved in the illegal business
of smuggling goods in the country that their days are numbered.

National standards council Chairman Ken Wathome said KEBS was rolling out a
countrywide consultation with key stakeholders to get their views on how it can discharge its
mandate better.

Wathome urged members of the public to come on board and give their views
regarding changes of the proposed standards act.

“KEBS seeks to ensure that Kenya’s standards conform to global frameworks that facilitates
trade between Kenya and the world and encourages productivity in manufacturing and service
delivery,” the chairman said.
The sessions with the stakeholders in both public and private sectors are taking place in eight
regions of the country targeted at reviewing the existing Standards Act that dates back to 1974.
By Jacob Songok

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