Government through Uganda National Bureau of Standards (UNBS) has reported that harmful cosmetics, energy saving lights and toilet soap topped the list of substandard products still flooding the market in Uganda.
This follows the findings of the recent sruvery conducted by UNBS to ascertain the rate of fake products in Uganda.
The standards body conducts regular market surveillance inspections to determine the level of compliance to Uganda Standards to protect consumers and the environment from dangerous substandard products.
In a statement released recently, UNBS said that “the market surveillance inspectors picked 249 samples which were submitted to UNBS laboratories for further analysis”.
“Among the tested samples, cosmetics registered the highest failure rate of 100%. The cosmetics which failed contained hydroquinone, a banned substance used in skin lightening creams,” added the statement.
Various scientific studies have confirmed that hydroquinone may have adverse effects on human heath such as damage to internal organs e.g. liver. As a result, UNBS moved to seize some of the cosmetics from the shelves.
Anti-bacterial toilet soap also registered the second highest failure rate at 71.4 per cent, followed by energy savers at 62.5 per cent and toilet paper at 55.5 per cent respectively.
“We have published a list of brands that failed our compliance tests because we would like to encourage the public to look out for them and shun them while we continue to play our role of seizing them from the market to protect the health and safety of consumers,” UNBS Executive Director, Dr. Ben Manyindo, said.
“Products that fail our compliance tests are seized from the market, kept in our warehouses for further management and/or destruction. We recently destroyed more than 400 metric tonnes of substandard products worth Shs3.5 billion,” Dr. Manyindo said.
The brands that have failed the UNBS compliance tests include Cosmetics like Local Hajjati Lususu; Mama Lususu; Sure Deal; Serious Herbal; Skin Doctor; Zero Pimples; Zonei.
Among the imported brands was Caro light toning, Caro light body lotion, Caro light cream, Citrolight body cream, Eclaire cream, Elegance Rico cream; New Santana, Light Cream, Super Claire Cream and Elegance Rico cream.
As a result, a significant amount of unauthorized items were seized, among them: 6.2 tonnes of assorted food items, 1.2 tonnes of Cosmetics, 2,051 pieces of mattresses, 410 Kgs of electrical items, and 450 kgs of toilet paper.
UNBS says it will continue to perform its mandate of enforcing standards to protect consumer health and safety and the environment against dangerous and sub-standard products.
“Fighting substandard products requires a concerted effort involving UNBS working together with manufacturers, traders, consumers, and other government agencies,” UNBS said.
Other affected products were toilet paper brands (local) like Eden Brand, Cozy, Hemico, Kleena, Lovely, Luxury, Nannies, Facial Tissue, Relax Blended Tissue, Silkee Jambo, Soft Nap, Softee Toilet Tissue, Super Silk, Swan Soft, Wisper; Kleena, Silkee Jambo, Softee Toilet Tissue, Luxury.
Imported toilet paper: Piao, Piao Piao, Virony, Cosy White, Rosy, Sifa, Tena;, Soft Wind Piao Piao, Local Eco Foam and Rio Foam.
Energy Savers bulbs (Imported): Canny, CIXING, DXBZ, Long stay, Nomi, Semco, Tedex, UNITEC and Val Light.