Government Control Of Unethical Practices In Nigeria: Reasons And Ways

Table Of Contents

  • Various Unethical Practices In Nigeria
  • Unethical Practices In Marketing
  • Unethical Practices Relating To Products
  • Reasons For Government Control Of Unethical Practices In Nigeria
  • Ways Government Control Unethical Practices

There is no society without a code of ethics. Nigeria has its own acceptable code of conduct. These social and morally acceptable standards of practices tell the citizens and others the dos and don’ts of the society. Any practice which conforms to the established acceptable code of conduct is regarded as ethical. On the other hand, any practice not conforming to the approved standard of social or moral behaviour is unethical.

Corruption or unethical practices is found in both public and private sector. Public officers and public holders, sellers of adulterated kerosene are practicing unethical business method, groundnut seller who cheats indulges in corruption or bad business practice. When banks and other financial institutions charge outrageous interest rates, refuse to grant loans to legitimate business people and companies for capacity building, but grant loans to the well-connected and those willing to wet-the-ground, but would never pay back the loans. Usually, different strata of government in Nigeria are blamed for not doing enough to tackle corruption, especially by enforcing existing laws to compel good corporate and individual behaviours.

This article therefore focuses on various ways and instruments used by government to control unethical practices in Nigeria.

Various Unethical Practices In Nigeria

Unethical practices are found in both public and private sectors of the economy such as in banking, education, markeing and practice relating to products etc. Some of these practices are mentioned below:

1. Election rigging in politics

2. Embezzlement of public fund by police office holders

3. Tax evasion by individuals and organization

4. Fraud and mismanagement of public funds by financial institution such as banks

5. Manufacturing of substandard goods by companies in Nigeria

6. Importation of harmful and substandard products into the country

7. Examination malpractices in schools.

Unethical Practices In Marketing

1. Pricing: Lack of clarity in pricing.

2. Dumping: Selling at a loss to increase market share and destroy competition in order to subsequently raise prices.

3. Price fixing cartels.

4. Encouraging people to claim prizes when the phoning premium rate numbers.

5. “Bait and switch” selling attracting customers and then subjecting them to high pressure selling techniques to switch to more expensive alternative.

6. High pressure selling especially in relation to groups such as the elderly.

7. Counterfeit goods and brand piracy.

8. Copying the style or packaging in an attempt to mislead consumers.

9. Deceptive advertising.

10. Irresponsible issue of credit cards and the irresponsible raising of credit limits.

11. Unethical practices in market research and competitor intelligence.

Unethical Practices Relating To Products

1. Selling goods abroad which are banned at home.

2. Omitting to provide information on side effects.

3. Unsafe products.

4. Built in obsolescence.

5. Wasteful and unnecessary packaging.

6. Deception on size and content.

7. Inaccurate and incomplete testing of products.

Reasons For Government Control Of Unethical Practices In Nigeria

1. Unethical practices such as tax evasion starve the government of substantial fund which could be used for infrastructural development.

2. Embezzlement and looting of public treasuries by public office holders divert money meant for social amenities in the interest of the citizens to private use. This increases the level of poverty in the society leading to escalation of crimes and social unrest.

3. Fraud and financial mismanagements in banks destroy our economy. It leads to a situation where investors loose confidence in our economy, budgeting and economic forecasting become difficult due to instability in the economy.

4. Political crimes such as election rigging, thuggery, killings, damage the image of the country. It leads to a situation where both foreigners and citizens of the country do not have confidence in leadership. In most case bad leaders use this means to rig themselves into power. This has seriously damaged the image of the country abroad and lead to situations where Nigerians traveling abroad are subjected to all sorts of humiliation, at foreign embassies and airports.

5. Manufacturing and importation of substandard and harmful products into the country expose Nigerians to health hazards and at the same time lead to a situation where Nigerians do not receive satisfying value from goods which they bought with their hand earned money.

6. Copyrights and plagiarism crimes have become serious source of intellectual abuse. It has discouraged creativity and innovations in intellectual circles.

7. The destruction of the environment by oil and other mining companies has affected farming and other agricultural practices in many part of the country. A good example is the Niger DeltA areas of Nigeria where agricultural inputs hardly yield any good result. This has led to serious economic and social crisis in those areas. Militant groups have emerged to fight against injustices and unethical practices in those areas.

Ways Government Control Unethical Practices

Government plays profound role in controlling unethical practices in all sectors. Government through the constitution, edits, decrees etc establish an acceptable standard of operation, conduct, or behaviour for various sectors of the society. Agencies of government are established to monitor, regulate and enforce compliance to these acceptable standards. Some of these agencies are:

1. Standard Organization Of Nigeria (SON)
2. Consumer Protection Council (CPC)
3. National Agency For Food and Drug Administration and Control (NAFDAC)
4. Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC)
5. Independent Corrupt Practices Commission (ICPC)
6. Nigeria Copyright Commission (NCC) and other related offences commission.

1. Standard Organization of Nigeria (SON)

In Nigeria, the fulcrum of standardization and regulation of quality for all products is vested in the Standards of Organization of Nigeria (SON). Established by Act No. 56 of 1971 and with three amendments in 1976, 1n84 and 1990, the body has the sole responsibility for National Policy on standards, standards specification, quality control and metrology.

Below is a list of some regulated products by SON:

1. Used motor vehicles
2. Vehicle spare parts
3. Motor vehiclee tyres
4. Automotive glass
5. Sprayers, pressure cookers, cement and gypsum
6. Construction materials etc.

SON uses Standard Organization of Nigeria Conformity Assessment Programme (SONCAP) as an instrument in regulating and standardizing productcs under its coverage.

2. Consumer Protection Council (CPC)

Consumer protection council operates inder the consumer protection Act No. 66 of 1992 that provides for the holistic protection of the consumer in line with the United Nations guideline for consumer protection of 1985. This commission is committed to protecting and enhancing consumers interest through information, education and enforcement of appropriate standards for goods and services and to promote an environment of fair and ethical trade practices.

3. Independent Corrupt Practices Commission (ICPC)

The Independence Corrupt Practices Commission (ICPC) and other related offences commission was inaugurated on September 29th, 2000 brought a fresh and decisive perspective to he fight against corruption in the form of holistic approach, encompassing enforcement, prevention and education measure. It captures in a single document a host of corrupt offence in their old and sophisticated quizzles The act brings under its purview all Nigerians, in the private and publci sectors and even those public officers with constitutional immunity. The main duty of the commission is to receive complaints, investigate and prosecute offenders.

4. Nigerian Copyright Commission (NCC)

Nigerian copyright commission legally confers on the author(s) and owner(s) of creative work the exclusive right to authorize the utilization of their work. The idea is that creators of the work in which copyright subsist should share in the earnings derived from the use of their work also protecting the integrity of the right owner. Nigerian Copyright Commission uses the Strategic Action against Piracy (STRAP) as an instrument to carry out its activities.

5. Strategic Action Against Piracy

Strategic Action Against Piracy (STRAP) was introduced by the Nigerian Copyright Commission and launched on May 3, 2005 by the President, Chief Olusegun as the national anti-piracy campaign for effective protection against piracy and all forms of intellectual property theft. STRAP is the main enforcement platform used by NCC to bring about a drastic reduction in the level of piracy and other forms of copyright abuses.

6. National Agency For Food and Drug Administration And Control (NAFDAC)

NAFDAC was established in the year 2009 with the vision to safeguard public health by ensuring that only the right qualitydrugs, food and other regulaed products are manufactured, imported, exported, distributed, sold and used.

7. The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC)

Economic and financial crimes commission (EFCC) is a Nigerian law enforcement agency. It is a civilian agency that investigates financial and money laundering.

Established in 2003 to cirb the menance of money laundering. The establishment of EFCC was by the Financial Action Task Force on money laundering (FATF), which named Nigeria as one of 23 countries non-cooperative in the international community’s effort to fight money laundering.

Mandates of EFCC

1. To curb the menance of the corruption that constitutes the cog in the wheel of corruption.

2. To protect national and foreign investments in the country.

3. To discourage ill gotten wealth.

4. To imbue the spirit of hard work in the citizenry.

5. Identify illegally acquired wealth and confiscate it.

6. Build an upright workforce in both public and private sectors of the economy.

7. Contribute to the global war against financial crimes.

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