By Felix Khanoba
One of the leading online shopping destinations in the country, Jumia Nigeria, has delisted from its platform 390 products belonging to 168 sellers of hand sanitisers and face masks.
The move followed general warning issued by the Federal Competition and Consumer Protection Commission (FCCPC) to sellers engaged in price gouging and arbitrary increases in prices of protective and hygiene products in the wake of the recent outbreak of Coronavirus.
A statement made available to The AUTHORITY in Abuja on Monday by FCCPC, said Jumia decision was contained in a communication received by Barr. Babatunde Irukera, Chief Executive Officer/Director General of the Commission.
The letter which was signed by the Chairwoman, Nigeria and Head of Institutional Affairs, Jumia Group, Juliet C. Anammah, quoted the readiness of the online shop to support measures put in place by FCCPC to ensure that consumers are not exploited.
The letter reads in part: “Let me reconfirm that at Jumia we want to work with your agency, most especially at a critical time like this.
“The actions we have taken are listed below. Website Clean-up: 390 products belonging to 168 sellers for sanitisers and face masks have been delisted. Unfortunately, this is an ongoing process as sellers can relist products. Thus, we will be doing hourly checks and clean up if necessary.
“We are manually selecting now only SKUs with the best prices to be listed.
“Seller Notification: A further communication has been sent to all sellers to notify them that we will delist all SKUs with prices seen to be taking advantage of the situation
“We also asked the sellers with items delisted to review the prices if they would like to be relisted
“Longer term actions: We have identified a seller that we can source from directly – this will ensure that we relist some of the essential items at better prices.
“We have also partnered with Reckitt Benckiser across Africa (manufacturer of sanitisers) to reduce the prices of their products on our site while we take 0per cent commission on all their sanitisers sold on our site.
“Additionally, since we have millions of consumers on our site and some are searching for ‘coronavirus’ on our site, we can collaborate with you FCCPC by ensuring the first result they find when they search for coronavirus is a URL leading to a message from either FCCPC or the Minister of Health. Let me know and we can set it up.”
This is the second time JUMIA is responding to FCCPC’s warning in the last one week, the statement added.
The AUTHORITY reports that the FCCPC boss had issued a release on February 28, 2020, stating that “The unusual and inordinate practice of unreasonably increasing the price of these (protective and hygiene) products in an indiscriminate manner, on account of the national public health concern (Coronavirus) violates both moral codes and extant law.