KORONADAL CITY, South Cotabato Mar15 (PIA) – The Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) joins other member organizations of the Consumer International (CI) from various countries in the celebration of the World Consumer Rights Day (WCRD) held every March 15 of each year.
In region 12, DTI 12 spearheads the one-day regional assembly of consumers organizations Wednesday (March 15) at FB Hotel in Koronadal City.
Key officers of six consumer organizations in SOCCSKSARGEN Region and DTI Provincial officials attended the event commemorating the WCRD. This year’s celebration theme “Building A Digital World Consumers Can Trust,” pushes for a better digital access, security, understanding and redress.
To date, the DTI has accredited six consumer organizations based in areas covering the SOCCSKSARGEN Region. These are the Kunsumo Kidapawan Association, Inc., Koronadal City Consumers Association (KOCICA), SK SUPER Consumer; Sarangani Consumer Association (SACA), General Santos City Consumer Welfare Council, Inc. and the Cotabato City Consumer Association, Inc.
The WCRD is an annual occasion marking the day when then US President John F. Kennedy formally addressed the issue of consumer rights on March 15, 1962 at the US Congress. It provides an opportunity to raise global awareness about consumer rights which must be protected and respected at all times, a DTI report stated.
DTI 12 Regional Director Ibrahim K. Guiamadel in his message read by Sarangani Provincial Director Engr. Nenita Barroso, said, “consumers need access to affordable, quality connections and a range of trusted providers, as access to the Internet is a fundamental aspect of consumer rights.”
Director Guiamadel asserts that with the advent of digital technology the active involvement of consumer organizations in the conduct of activities pertaining to consumer welfare advocacy using technological advances is a requirement.
The official underscored what consumer organizations can conscientiously advocate among its members and the general public the practice of the basic consumer responsibilities (critical awareness, action, social concern, environmental awareness and solidarity); work with implementing agencies and business in undertaking consumer welfare and protection programs to promote the basic rights of consumers; participate in government’s consultation programs and activities in formulating policies regarding consumer welfare protection; and conduct consumer education and advocacy programs in order to develop vigilant consumers.
These consumer groups can also monitor implementation of product quality standards and alerting consumers of harmful products/practices proliferating in the market; monitor implementation and violation of the Consumer Act, Price Act and other related consumer laws, rules and regulations.
The Consumer Organizations can also report violations to concerned implementing government agencies; encourage consumers to file consumer complaints before concerned implementing agencies; assist or act as duly authorized representatives of consumers on matters pertaining to consumer complaints and participate in the annual celebration of the Consumer Welfare Month in October. (AC Agad-PIA 12 with report from ENLFerolino-DTI12)