With the cover having been blown on syndicates manufacturing illicit food brands and other products, there is cause for concern as these have now reached the shores of Msunduzi. The brazen production and distribution of illegal and fake products within Msunduzi has raised alarm bells and caused a lot of panic amongst its residents as these are not officially tested and certified by relevant authorities.
According to reports and evidence which emerged when arrests were made there is a concerted effort to distribute these goods to remote areas, especially the townships and informal settlements. To the unassuming eye, these food products look exactly like the authentic, original brands. According to the Business Licencing Business Unit, one of the ways of enforcing compliance is to ensure that all business operating within the Msunduzi jurisdiction are registered so that there is a clear line of sight to track all of them.
Shedding light on this issue, Business Licencing Manager Mr. Mandla Sithole said the campaign they are undertaking is to eradicate illegal businesses and operations, including those who trade in these illegal and fake products as these can also be harmful and poisonous. “We are targeting all illegal buildings and are confiscating all illegal, fake and expired goods because continuing to sell these products puts the lives of our communities in danger,” said Sithole.
Msunduzi News joined the council’s task team that deals with eradicating these illegal operations. Amongst the expired and illegal fake products seized there is Betasol, Diprison, Movate, Lemovate, Carotone and Carolite. In addition, it was discovered that expired products were being sold at discounted prices. Expired tablets were also seized as part of the operation.
Also present and part of the task team during the operation was the Department of Economic Development, Tourism & Environmental Affairs’ Mr Dumisani Mzila, who said: We are finding prescription medication like stress medication, which normally a patient would get after being signed off by a medical professional. These outlets are not even licensed to dispense medication in the first place,” said Mzila.
Mzila concluded by saying that it does not help just tracking the retailers but that we need to track the illegal manufacturers of these illegal products at source. “We want these people to be arrested as they are killing our people on account of their innocence and ignorance.”