Our Mission: Food, Education, Medicine

Consumer Rights, Services and Protection

The origins of the consumer movement, as it is today, can be attributed to John F. Kennedy, the US President who equated the rights of the common American consumer with the national interest of the country. In his presidential address on 15 March 1962, Kennedy underlined the importance of the consumer in the marketplace: ‘If a consumer is offered inferior products, if prices are exorbitant, if drugs are unsafe or worthless, if the consumer is unable to choose on an informed basis, then his dollar is wasted, his health and safety may be threatened, and national interest suffers.’

Actually, there is no dichotomy between citizens and consumers, since consumers as members of civil society have obligations and responsibilities, besides having a set of rights.

Consumer protection is often associated with efficient and effective implementation of regulatory laws in a democratic set-up polity; and civil societies have a key role to play in upholding, advocating and educating citizens on their rights to accessing, receiving and transacting within both public and private services.

Today, citizens have been armed with a set of consumer rights, and despite the legal provisions available for protecting the consumer, several pathetic and heart-rending cases of negligence – like in the area of medical services, were prevalent. Medical malpractice included denying medicine in emergency cases, exploiting patients by prolonged treatment to make money, creating injury by prescribing wrong medicines, taking cuts from laboratories for referring cases, among others.

Voluntary Aid’ operates on established alliances with the Federal Competition and Consumer Protection Commission (FCCPC) in preventing mistreatment or exploitation of citizens.  In so doing, we design and implement youth-led activities to track, ensure, sensitize, and report consumer rights violations and restricted access to freer, fairer and safer services of citizens to relevant government authorities to take action and enforcement; thereby, promoting consumer rights and strengthening its’ regulation within the civic space.