'Avoid Second-Hand Underwear'

The Ministry of Trade and Industry in collaboration with the Ghana Standard Authority (GSA) on Thursday organized a day’s forum to educate the general public on the need to refrain from patronizing used-underwear. The event was part of a campaign against the importation and sale of secondhand underwear and addressing participants at the Takoradi Market Circle, Mr Kofi Nagetey, the Deputy Executive Director of GSA, said secondhand underwear contained pores, germs and bacteria from the fluid of the previous user and has the potential of being transmitted to the next user. He said those who used secondhand underwear such as panties, brazier, handkerchiefs and singlets risk contracting rashes and other skin diseases and entreated the public to stop purchasing them. Mr Nagetey noted that legislative Instrument (LI 1586) which was passed in 1994 had banned the importation and sale of used-underwear in Ghana and urged the public to help enforce the ban by refusing to patronize. He noted that the GSA and Custom Excise and Preventive Service (CEPS) have been preventing the entry of secondhand underwear into the country but some importers smuggle them through unapproved routes into the country. He said the GSA had seized some bales of used-underwear in some parts of the country and would soon burn them to serve as deterrent to importers and retailers of such goods and entreated the general public to join the crusade in educating those who had not heard about the ban on used-clothes, adding that it is a collective responsibility of all. Mr Nagetey said the education fora had been ongoing throughout the country concurrently and had been to first and second cycle educational institutions to educate the students about the dangers and health hazard associated with the use of secondhand underwear. Over hundred participants, including traders, secondhand cloth sellers, and assembly members took part in the forum.