The Federal Government has commenced strict enforcement of calibration of installed load weighbridges across the country.
In a letter issued by the Ministry of Transportation, the move was to facilitate the enforcement of the axle load limits necessary to prevent damage of Nigerian roads caused by overloading.
It was recalled that President Muhammadu Buhari signed the instrument of accession of the supplementary Act relating to the harmonization of Standards and procedures for the control of dimensions, weights and axle load of heavy-duty goods transport vehicles.
As a result, the Standards Organisation of Nigeria (SON) has been directed by FG to ensure that the weighbridges at the ports and loading bays are fully calibrated. According to the statement, the document provides guidelines and penalties for enforcement of the new regime of axle load limits in Nigeria
Meanwhile, the Director General, SON, Mallam Farouk Salim said during the official ceremony and commencement of the calibration exercise of the APM terminal weighbridges in Apapa ports that the agency would carry out the directive in line with international best practices.
Director of NMI, Engineer Bede Obayi who represented the DG of SON emphasised that the task given to the agency is to calibrate weighbridges for measurement of all cargoes.
He noted that, “The calibration will be effected on weighbridges to ascertain the axle load for heavy duty vehicles and food transporting vehicles that transport both wet and dry products across the country.
He reiterated that the Federal Government aims toward preserving the roads from constant damage by overweight trucks, as well as given Nigerians the right quality products.
Performing the calibration of the weighbridges, Salim said the calibration, which would be extended to other seaports and oil deports/terminals in the country, would help the government to get accurate weights of cargoes and also to check influx of substandard goods and services.
The Director-General noted also that the calibration exercise is a country-wide exercise that was given to the National Metrology Institute (NIMA) of the Standards Organisation of Nigeria as the custodians of the primary measurement standards of highest accuracy in Nigeria.
“Metrology is the science of measurements and can be used to check the influx of substandard goods and services in Nigeria”, he explained.
He said the Federal Executive Council (FEC) approvals on roads construction and management give credence to the calibration services to ensure that the roads are preserved and maintained for long-term uses.
“An example of the implementation process is been carried in other Africa countries to support the AFCTA. SON is to ensure that these weighbridges give accurate measurements to the users”, the DG added.
He maintained that given the assignment to SON shows that government appreciates the roles of the metrology and calibration to economy development.
“We are happy that this assignment is given to us. This shows that government appreciates our measuring roles. We want to assure all port stakeholder’ of accurate measurements and enjoin them to always declare accurately necessary information about their imports and exports”, he further stated.
Salim noted that the exercise would help the government to collect correct revenues, adding that the SON management has sensitized all stakeholders on the benefits of weighbridge calibration and accurate declaration of cargo weights and would continue to educate and enlighten them.
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