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Spirits worth K150, 000 seized

By BUUMBA CHIMBULU

A joint team of officers from enforcement agencies have seized portable spirits illegally produced worth over K150, 000 while closing down three facilities in Lusaka for unlawful manufacturing.

This was after the Zambia Compulsory Standards Agency (ZCSA) conducted joint operations with the Lusaka City Council (LCC), Zambia Metrology Agency (ZMA) and the police on the illegal production of beverages during the said period under review in the first quarter of 2023.

According to the ZCSA Head of Communication Brian Hatyoka, the agency had enhanced enforcement activities to ensure compliance to the requirements of ZS 808 for potable spirits during the first quarter of 2023. “With effect from 1st August 2021, it became mandatory for all manufacturers, importers and traders to obtain authority from the Agency to supply any type of potable spirits on the market.”

He said potable spirits illegally produced worth over K150, 000 had therefore been seized while three facilities in Lusaka were closed by a joint team of officers from the law enforcement agencies.

The closed entities are JBJ Enterprises Limited of Kalikiliki, VIVA Manufacturing Works Limited and Mafabu Enterprises Limited of Garden House Area in Lusaka.

“The agency implemented a number of enforcement activities, among which are factory inspections, import inspections and market surveillance inspections.

“In a bid to ensure full compliance with minimum safety requirements, the Agency and other stakeholders will conduct more enforcement activities on unauthorised manufacturers of potable spirits, including backyards if need be,” he said in a statement.

Meanwhile, Mr Hatyoka said ten bales of used underwear and night gowns worth over K25,000 have been withdrawn from the market in Lusaka during the first quarter of 2023.

He explained that this was to protect the safety of consumers because used textile products that are worn in very close contact with the skin may cause ailments like skin rash.

Mr Hatyoka said that the ZS 559 prohibited the importation and sale of used textile products containing undergarments and night wear like pyjamas, night gowns, ladies and gents’ briefs, brassieres camisoles, vests. 

“Investigations are currently underway to establish the original importers of the banned Textile Products. As mandated under the Compulsory Standards Act No. 3 of 2017, ZCSA will consider various options available, including prosecution of offenders. “During the first quarter of 2023, ZCSA handled Nine cases of illegal sale of used textile products containing undergarments contrary to the provisions of the Zambian Standard (ZS) 559: Inspection and Acceptance Criteria for Used Textile (Salaula),” he said in a statement.

Mr Hatyoka stated that over the last two years, the enforcement activities were fewer mainly because of Covid-19 restrictions. 

He indicated that Lusaka and Copperbelt provinces, especially in markets, were the most affected areas when it came to the problem of having used underwear and night gowns on the market.

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