Retailers who sell communication devices that do not meet the regulatory‚ technical and safety requirements by the Independent Communications Authority of South Africa (Icasa) were busted on Wednesday at China Mall in Johannesburg.
The raid was a joint operation with the police.
“We are doing this to protect our consumers. They (retailers) are selling electronic communication devices that are not type-approved by Icasa. Every communication device must have a type approval sticker on the packaging. If it does not‚ it is not legal and cannot be used. Icasa is here to confiscate such devices. It’s a compliance issue‚ we are here to enforce the law‚” said Icasa spokesperson Paseka Maleka.
“These phones don’t have any warranty or guarantee. So should they get damaged you can’t claim anything. It’s a loss to the customer‚ they have to keep coming back to buy‚” said Maleka. “In terms of the law they must be destroyed. We implement the law. All confiscated equipment must be destroyed.”
Confiscated items included cellphones‚ drones‚ computer mouses‚ microphones‚ and signal jammers. Also wireless cameras‚ security alarm systems‚ two-way radios‚ wireless speakers‚ and smart watches.
Five shops in the mall were the main target of the raid.
A shop owner‚ Zhou X said that he did not know anything about regulations. “I’m feeling bad. I know many of my friends went through this but I didn’t know about this or Icasa. But now that I know I will do better and check my stock to be legal‚” said X.
X said that he stood to lose about R20 000 in profit due to this.
Another shop owner‚ who wouldn’t disclose his name‚ said that his products are legal. “I don’t know why they are here. My stuff is fine. They can check. And as you can see customers are going in‚” said the man‚ while making tea.
Source: TMG Digital.