African nations need to do due diligence on imports

Editor, RE: “Africa will pay a higher price for dumped ‘cheap dirty fuel’” (The New Times, September 19).
Fumes belch from a vehicle on Kanombe-Remera road. High-sulphur fuels can permanently damage emission-reducing technologies in cars, experts say. (File)
Fumes belch from a vehicle on Kanombe-Remera road. High-sulphur fuels can permanently damage emission-reducing technologies in cars, experts say. (File)

Editor,

RE:Africa will pay a higher price for dumped ‘cheap dirty fuel’” (The New Times, September 19). Where do we stand in Rwanda with fuel requirement? I doubt if anyone knows. I also doubt if any African country knew what was happening before the story was published. Otherwise someone, an African, would have complained already.

 

We always hear from several quarters that Africa is awakening but it seems that one part of its brain is still deep asleep. Why don’t we impose standards on things we import from overseas, especially on products that can affect our health?

 

Just a few days ago, The New Times published an article with the headline, “Think twice before attempting to bleach”. Unlike the dirty fuel we are importing, we have always known that bleachers are carcinogen but no single African country has ever tried to ban their importation.

 

Also, the increase in cancer diseases in Africa could be attributed to the increased exposure to carcinogen products, such as the dirty fuel fumes and other products imported into our countries without bothering to know if they even meet standards of the country of origin.

Why would we import a product that doesn’t even meet the minimum safety standard of the manufacturing country? Why can’t we try to find out from those countries, given that we may not have the capacity to test every product we import?

Seth

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