The Consumer Protection Bill

The purpose of this Bill is to protect the consumer of goods and services by establishing the Consumer Protection Agency, and regulation of Consumer Advocacy Organisations. It will also repeal the Consumer Contracts Act [Chapter 8:03] and to provide for matters incidental to or connected with issues of consumer protection.

Exceptions are goods or services promoted or supplied to the State, services supplied under an employment contract and transactions which the consumer is a juristic person whose asset value or annual turnover equals or exceeds the threshold value prescribed in the Government Gazette notice by the Minister of Industry and Commerce. The Act shall not apply to transactions for the sale, letting or hire of immovable property and contract of employment.

the establishment and functions of the Consumer Protection Agency. The functions of the Agency are centred on the protection of consumers from unjust, unreasonable, improper and unacceptable, deceptive, unfair and fraudulent conduct and trading practices. The Agency shall also promote fair business practices by coordinating and networking consumer activities with consumers’ vis-à-vis consumer organisations, and protect consumer interests. Further, the Authority promotes consumer awareness and empowerment by referring and appearing before any court of law.

the accreditation and suspension or cancellation of Consumer Protection Advocacy Groups. These clauses provide the framework and criteria upon which groups will be accredited in line with the purpose of this Act. The clauses further provide for instances in which accreditation may be cancelled and punitive measures for non-compliance with accreditation criteria is also enunciated.

the right to fair value, good quality and safety of goods and services. This clause outlines in detail the instances where and condition show these rights will be guaranteed.

the Consumer’s right to consumer education which education will cover but not be limited to environmental impacts, benefits, costs and hazards among other areas.

the implied warranty of quality a producer, importer, distributor or retailer are expected to give the consumer. It further provides redress to the consumer when a violation occurs.

the warranty on repaired goods. As highlighted above, this clause offers redress in giving six months warranty, implied and/or express which warranty is to be given by a service provider.

the warning concerning fact and nature of risks in that a supplier of goods or services shall not supply such subject to risk of which ever nature and expect a consumer to be fully knowledgeable of such risk. This clause attracts a punitive measure to persons in contravention of this clause and its clear outlines of warnings to be given to consumers.

the consumer’s right to cancel advance reservation, booking or order. The clause also provides protection to the supplier who makes a commitment to provide these services in allowing deposits and reasonable payment, prescribed cancellation fees/charges and exceptions where such payments may be waivered for non-fulfilment.

the delivery of goods or supply of services. The clause elaborates on the responsibilities of delivery of goods; and specifications to be included in agreements in relation to delivery of goods. The clause also provides for the inspection of goods by the consumer and other contentious issues related to delivery of goods.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *