City officials, groups inspect Christmas lights sold in Cagayan de Oro malls

Bobby Lagsa
A team of inspectors from City Hall, the City Price Coordinating Council, and business and consumer groups visit 6 malls for the first round of inspection

INSPECTION. Cagayan de Oro City Price Coordinating Council Co-Chairman Edgar Uy inspects boxes of Christmas lights on November 27, 2019. Photo by Bobby Lagsa/Rappler

CAGAYAN DE ORO, Philippines – The City Price Coordinating Council (CPCC)  and the Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) have started inspecting Christmas lights sold around across the city to ensure they are safe for use.

A team of inspectors from the City Hall, CPCC, DTI, Filipino Chinese Chamber of Commerce and Industry,  and Xavier University Consumer Association visited 6 malls in the city to conduct the inspection on Wednesday, November 27,

“We started the inspection and monitoring of Christmas lights as substandard  being sold is dangerous  as it does not complies with standards,” said CPCC co-chairman Edgardo Uy, adding that the body began the pre-Christmas inspection in 2014. 

Uy said that Christmas lights must bear the Import Commodity Clearance (ICC) sticker for imported items and the Philippine Standard (PS) mark if locally manufactured.

“It must have this mark as it certifies that it passed the requirements of the Philippine product standards,” he said.

Substandard Christmas lights are sold at cheaper prices but Uy reminded the public that such products have caused fires that led to deaths and damage to property.

In one of the stores they inspected, Rozanne Marie San Juan of DTI found out that some of the Christmas lights being sold had been removed from their packaging, so they had no accompanying  product information.

San Juan said that this was a violation and reminded the store managers not to do this.

“There are some products not in boxes though most of the boxes have stickers and they displayed their product certifications for everyone to see,” San Juan said.

Uy reminded the sales persons in charge of the Christmas lights to ensure that products have the proper ICC or PS mark.

In another store, hundreds of boxes of lights were being sold without ICC or PS stickers. When asked by the team, the store manager presented the stickers that were not on the individual boxes.

Uy and San Juan suggested that the stickers be placed on the boxes before they are put on display. 

“Imported items have corresponding stickers that should have been put into individual items. It is the duty of the stores to put them on before it is being put out for sale,” Uy said.

San Juan said that there would be individual inspectors who would carry out the activity throughout the city in the coming days.

“Products that we found [without] the ICC or PS mark, and if the store owners cannot present proof that it has certification, will be confiscated and destroyed,” Uy said.

He added that violators will be penalized after undergoing investigation.

Uy said that since the inspections began in 2014, the number of violations had gone down.

“Since 2014, the numbers of violators have substantially gone down. Before we uses heavy equipment to destroy the products to ensure that they will not circulate again. Now there is less violation,” Uy said. –