The Standards Organisation of Nigeria (SON) is supporting the manufacturing and importation of essential materials to combat the challenges of COVID-19 through the deployment of 28 relevant international Standards from the International Organisation for Standardisation (ISO) and one from the African Organisation for Standardisation (ARSO) on Alcohol based Hand Sanitizers.

According to a statement from the office of the Director General, Standards Organisation of Nigeria (SON), Osita Aboloma Esq. the deployment of the Standards is to meet emergency needs occasioned by COVID-19 globally while the process for the adoption would continue unhindered in spite of the lockdown.

The Standards, which are being provided at no cost to local manufacturers, are being made available to the National Committee on Sustainable Production and Delivery of Essential Commodities during the COVID-19 Pandemic of which SON is a member. This is to guide local manufacturers as well as provide a benchmark for adjudging all imported products in the category during the pandemic.

The statement disclosed that SON has received free, unlimited usage of the ISO web conferencing system (Zoom) for national standards development work only. “With this offer, Nigeria as an eligible member will be assigned a Zoom account for developing countries, which we can share with our Technical Committee (TC) members and experts, creating the equivalent of a “virtual conference room” at the national level, the statement clarified.

Aboloma said further that with this, Nigeria’s TC meetings could continue largely, while its stakeholders and experts keep safe in this time of bans on gatherings and travels.

The SON Chief Executive called on TC members across the Nation to expect invitations from the Secretariat for participation in the consideration and adoption of several international Standards from ISO resources, to support global efforts in dealing with the COVID-19 crisis.

He listed some of the international Standards compiled by ISO to support global efforts in dealing with the COVID-19 crisis as follows;

ISO 374-5:2016 Protective gloves against dangerous chemicals and micro-organisms – Part  5: Terminology and performance requirements for micro-organisms risk.

ISO 10651-3:1997 Lung ventilators for medical use – Part 3: Particular requirements for emergency and transport ventilators.

ISO 10651-5:2006 Lung ventilators for medical use – Particular requirements for basic safety and essential performance – Part 5: Gas-powered emergency resuscitators.

ISO 13688:2013 Protective clothing – General requirements.

ISO 17510:2015 Medical devices – Sleep apnoea breathing therapy – Masks and application accessories.

ISO 19223:2019 Lung ventilators and related equipment -Vocabulary and semantics.

ISO 22301:2019 Security and resilience – Business continuity management systems – Requirements.

ISO 5356-1:2015 Anaesthetic and respiratory equipment – Conical connectors – Part 1: Cones and sockets.

ISO 80601-2-12: 2020 Medical electrical equipment – Part 2-12: Particular requirements for basic safety and essential performance of critical care ventilators.

ISO 80601-2-80: 2018 Medical electrical equipment – Part 2-80: Particular requirements for basic safety and essential performance of ventilatory support equipment for ventilatory insufficiency.

The SON Chief Executive stated that the TC would also consider the adoption of a French National Standard “AFNOR SPEC S76-001 Barrier Masks – Guide to minimum requirements,  methods of testing,  making and use” to provide necessary quality guidance for mass production of face masks in the country especially by Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises (MSMEs).

Aboloma commended the past efforts of all members of various National Technical and Mirror Committees in ensuring development, adoption, adaption and review of market driven Standards for use in Nigeria.

According to him, their patriotic efforts have helped in great measure to promote the competitiveness of Made in Nigeria products locally and for export, safety of Consumers and steady growth of the Nation’s economy.


Hand Gloves Face Mask


FG parleys automobile firms on local production of ventilators

The Minister of Industry, Trade and Investment, Otunba Niyi Adebayo

The Minister of Industry, Trade and Investment, Otunba Niyi Adebayo, on Monday said the federal government had opened discussions with Innoson Vehicle Manufacturing Company and other key indigenous vehicle manufacturing companies with a view to producing ventilators in the country.

This is even as the President of the Manufacturers Association of Nigeria (MAN), Engineer Mansur Ahmed, disclosed that manufacturers had increased Nigeria’s domestic production capacity for face masks from two million masks in February to 27 million now.
The minister, who updated journalists on COVID-19 pandemic and its implications for the manufacturing sector in Abuja, said the government received a proposal from Innoson Vehicle Manufacturing Company to produce ventilators and similar proposals had been submitted by other indigenous auto manufacturers and that the various proposals are being considered.
“We are also engaging our indigenous car manufacturers at this time to prepare them to tweak their operations to begin the manufacture of ‘Made in Nigeria’ ventilators – critical medical equipment in the fight against the virus,” he said.
On what the ministry is doing to curtail the pandemic’s negative impact on the manufacturing, trade and related sectors of the economy, the minister said the ministry had last month set up a committee on “the sustainable production and delivery of essential commodities” during the COVID-19 pandemic, amongst others.
Adebayo said the ministry had been collaborating with the Manufacturers Association of Nigeria (MAN); the Nigerian Association of Chamber of Commerce Industry Mines and Agriculture (NACCIMA); Nigerian Traders Association (NANTS); and other relevant stakeholders to guarantee unhindered production of essential items like food, medical and pharmaceutical products.
In his remarks, the MAN President, Engineer Ahmed, said manufacturers had braced the lockdown to ensure uninterrupted production of essential goods, including supply of raw materials.
The industrialist said as imports of essential goods dropped, local manufacturers were trying to bridge the gap by ramping up domestic production.

In furtherance of National efforts at tackling the coronavirus pandemic in Nigeria, the Standards Organisation of Nigeria (SON) has undertaken a quality assurance inspection of Cross River Garment Factory (CRGF) in Calabar, Cross River State.

Located at Atimbo, by Goodluck Jonathan Bypass, Calabar, the factory is into mass production of Ankara barrier masks in furtherance of the “No Masks, No Movement ” policy of the Cross River State Government.

The SON inspection team was led by the Cross River State Coordinator, Michael Ogbuji, accompanied by Mrs. Bassey Duke and Engr. Samson Kolaru.

Welcoming the team, Acting Managing Director of CRGF, Mr. Edet Joseph described  the factory’s product as double layer composite Masks with inner liner and high tensile strength of the head harness as well as neat sowing finishes.

According to him,  the Ankara material being used for the barrier masks is 100% cotton and sourced from neighbouring Abia State.

The Ag. MD stated that all precautionary safety measures are being observed in the mass production of the re-usable masks with capacity for 100,000 units per day. It can be used for a maximum of 4 weeks, he said.

Mr. Edet Joseph stated that the company which commenced operations in 2018 was producing largely for the Cross River State Ministry of Health which distributes freely throughout the State.

Responding after the tour of the production facility, Mr. Michael Ogbuji on behalf of the SON Director General, Osita Aboloma  Esq., commended the company’s management for the initiative in response to the Federal Government’s call for sustainable production in the face of the COVID-19 pandemic.

He explained that the inspection was aimed at adding value from the raw materials, processes to the finished products of the barrier masks to ensure that they comply with the requirements of AFNOR SPEC S76‐001: 2020, one of the Standards provided by SON to meet Nigeria’s need during the COVID-19 pandemic.

The SON Coordinator admonished the company’s Management to share necessary technical information regarding the production and quality control checks with SON and assured them of absolute confidentiality.

Other issues discussed with the company’s management include the barrier filtration efficiency,  breathing resistance, labelling requirements for identification and traceability in the markets amongst others.

He then commended the Cross River State Government for the initiative and advised the Company’s Management to keep and maintain records of all quality control checks carried out on the finished products.


In furtherance of efforts to ensure production and use of quality Barrier Masks by Nigerians to prevent the spread of the coronavirus, Standards Organisation of Nigeria has published an extract of the international standard AFNOR SPEC-S76-001:2020 earlier made available to the Presidential Task Force (PTF) on Sustainable Production and Delivery of Essential Materials.

A statement from the office of the Director General,  Osita Aboloma Esq. disclosed that the 6-page handbill is to serve as quick guide to users as well as makers of Barrier Masks across the length and breadth of the Country, particularly the Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises involved in the production.

Aboloma stated that the extract became necessary in view of the emergency situation occasioned by the lockdown due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

The document according to him focused on scope, description, coverage, materials, safety features and test of Barrier Masks as well as instructions on the proper usage and disposal of the masks.

The SON Chief Executive said the document is being disseminated through social media platforms as well as the regular media to ensure its rapid spread.

He stated that this became imperative in view of the mass production being commissioned by some State Governments, Corporate Bodies as well as smaller units by families across the country.

Aboloma concluded that the SON is already working with all other 14 member countries of the Economic Community of West African States and the
ECOWAS Commission to harmonise the Standard for Barrier Masks in the fight against the COVID-19 pandemic in the Region.

The ECOWAS Standards Technical Management Committee has thus set up a Task Force to be Chaired by Nigeria while Mali serves as Secretary, to harmonise the standard within the shortest possible time through virtual meetings online, he said.

Other members of the Task Force according to the SON Chief Executive are, Senegal, Cote D’ Voire, The Gambia, Ghana and Cape Verde.

Inspection of the Ventilator by the SON team

In support of efforts towards sustainable local production of essential materials to fight the COVID-19 pandemic, the Standards Organisation of Nigeria (SON) has undertaken a quality assurance inspection of ventilator and alcohol based hand saniters being produced by the University of Benin (UNIBEN).

The inspection was carried out by the Edo  State office of SON led by Acting Coordinator,  Engr. Lawal Ismaila.

Welcoming the SON team, UNIBEN Vice Chancellor, Professor Lilian Salami expressed delight at the visit.

According to her, the invented ventilator and alhocol based hand sanitizer are part of the University’s contribution to tackling the corona virus pandemic in Nigeria.

The ventilator she said, is for use in Hospitals for COVID-19 Patients, while the alcohol based Hand Sanitizer is for preventive measures against the spread of the COVID-19 virus.
Prof. Salami stated that the University Community was looking forward to SON certification of the two products under the  Mandatory Conformity Assessment Program for made-in-Nigeria products after due process.

Leader of the UNIBEN COVID-19 initiative Team, Prof. Kesington Obahiagbon highlighted the ventilator’s unique features as being able to operate on public electricity supply as well as batteries.

He stated further that the ventilator was designed for use also in Ambulances through connection to the lighter port in a vehicle.

Responding, Engr. Lawal enjoined the UNIBEN team to strive towards meeting the requirements of international standards for Ventilator for Medical Use, namely  ISO 10651 and IEC 60601 as well as ARS 1470: 2019 for the Alcohol based Hand Sanitizers.

He assured the UNIBEN Management of SON’s capacity for added value to the products in the course of regular inspection towards certification under the MANCAP scheme while also handing copies of the relevant Standards to the University at no cost.

The SON inspection team also comprised Engr. Moses Eruotor, Mrs. Dapo Onafuye, Mrs. Uche Emeana and Mrs. Joy Eghenlen.

A group photograph of the SON Inspection Team with the UNIBEN Management after the inspection.