Bravo TCRA for damning fake importers

06Mar 2016
Kenan Kalagho
Guardian On Sunday
Bravo TCRA for damning fake importers

Earlier, I wanted to give you my views regarding the elite politicians and their generations who continue to rule over the poor folk including myself in my motherland because we had no opportunity to grab the knowledge from the white man’s land.

I will miss it dearly as it has been a mother to me and a confidant to my person as well for the past five months.

I am compelled into letting it go in a non title bout because of the lack of trust among my own pals who have allowed such devices to illegally cross borders into my country.

I am told such illegal and cheap gadgets pass through ports in my country under the auspice of official dignitaries tasked with overseeing the no-nonsense entry of anything looking strange, not to mention obviously fake gadgets.

I have reason to believe and a good course to be ashamed of the thought that we have been able to flock markets in the neighboring countries of Malawi, Zambia, Burundi and Rwanda that use our ports as entry points and Kariakoo as their major shopping centre, with the same fake stuff.

I wonder the kind of curses they have been throwing to my motherland and her dear traders on realizing they had been giving us their fortunes for counterfeits.

However, I was taken by surprise earlier this week when a confidant told me I would be losing my gadget in the next three months if code numbers issued by the Tanzania Communication Regulatory Authority (TCRA) failed to tarry.

When I dialed *#06# on my handset before sending the previewed numbers to 15090 as prescribed by the regulators, the result was disappointing as it showed it was indeed a waste, no tarrying, meaning my gadget was going to be worthless come June.

I was now sure that my loving device had skipped off the eyes of those guys at the port who pretend to be inspecting the quality of imported stuff.

I was equally flabbergasted as to who to throw blames among the equally hostile authorities, traders and mobile dealers.
But to make matters worse, a friend of mine informed me that mobile phone traders in the streets of Kariakoo had closed shops in protest of the code numbers released by the communication regulators.

But why did authorities not take the chance to rush in and make a scrutiny to all the closed shops in protest as it was clear their products were substandard? I wondered.

Though I had been expecting news headlines on Kariakoo protest to dominate the media that day, its scanty coverage found no trace of a quality inspector at the nation’s major shopping centre in crisis.

Had authorities such as Tanzania Bureau of Standards, TCRA, including Mobile Phone dealers operating in the country-the likes of Nokia, Techno, Samsung released their codes for the public to get to know fake gadgets, only genuine products could have filled our market, I opined.

I am therefore very much contented to believe that Mobile brands dealers too have a hand in all the fake products trading in our local market.

Isn’t it high time the government instituted regulations for all dealers in such products to at least offer their clients with two year warrant for every purchased product, taking a leaf of experienced Sonny and or LG brands.

Unlike Sonny and LG brands, the majority of the brands on the market have a warrant of less than two months with strong words on their receipts, “Goods once sold should not be returned.”

I have been forced to write this because a few years back, a brother of mine bought a huge West Point refrigerator which lasted only two months, but he was neither given a substitute nor had it been repaired because he was not given a guarantee warrant during the purchase.

This is what has been happening to most clients of the fake products tainting in our market even as we have the authorities getting their month allowances for the job.

We therefore commend TCRA for going tough on fake dealers who give no damn over whether our lovely motherland becomes a dumping site for imported garbage.
Till next time,
The writer is revise editor, the Guardian on Sunday