Role of CCPC in protecting consumer rights

Wed, 15 Mar 2017 12:32:26 +0000


By Sheila Sakupwanya


Brief background of CCPC

The Competition and Consumer Protection Commission (CCPC) is a statutory body that was established in 1997 under the name Zambia Competition Commission (ZCC). The name was then changed in 2010 to CCPC following the enactment of the new Act called the Competition and Consumer Protection Act (CCPA) No. 24 of 2010 and repeal of the old Act. The CCPA gives the Commission administrative powers to fine and adequately provides for consumer redress.


Mandate of CCPC

  • The mandate of the Commission cuts across all economic sectors. CCPC regulates the Zambian economy to avoid restrictive business practices, abuse of dominant position of market power, anti-competitive mergers and acquisitions and cartels as these erode consumer welfare. The Commission is also mandated to enhance consumer welfare.

In general terms therefore, the principle aim of the Commission is to safeguard competition and ensure consumer protection.


Objectives of the CCPC

The key objectives of the Commission are;

  • to promote a culture of competition for a sustained

economic growth and wealth creation

  • to protect and enhance consumer welfare in the economy

for the benefit of all Zambians


Functions of CCPC

The functions of CCPC are to investigate and assess cartels that

borders on:

  • fixing of prices among competitors
  • division of markets by allocating customers, suppliers or territories
  • setting of production volume/output
  • collusive tendering or bid rigging
  • Review, Investigate and assess abuse of dominance conducts

which take the form of:


  1. applying dissimilar conditions to equivalent transactions with

other trading parties

  1. denying any person access to an essential facility

iii. predatory pricing of goods and services

  1. excessive pricing of goods and services
  2. imposing unfair trading conditions such as exclusive dealing

and tying/bundling of products and services


  • Review, assess and investigate mergers that take place due to:
  1. sale or lease of assets of an enterprise to an independent enterprise
  2. amalgamation or combination of independent enterprises

iii. occurrence of a joint venture that involves two or more

independent enterprises

  • Ensuring that consumers are protected from unfair trading

practices by:

  1. investigating and analysing consumer rights violations as

stipulated in the Act

  1. educating and sensitising the public on consumer protection

provisions in the Act as well as their rights as enshrined

in other various pieces of legislation

iii. carrying out advocacy between the business entities and the

consumers and mediating between them


What are the eight basic consumer rights?

  1. The right to satisfaction of basic needs

It is a consumer right to have access to basic, essential goods and services, adequate food, clothing, shelter, health care, education, public utilities, water and sanitation. This means that every government should ensure that even the poorest of the poor access these basic needs.


  1. The right to safety

This entails that a consumer has the right to protected against products and services which are hazardous to health or life. Governments must ensure that they adopt or encourage the adoption of appropriate measures including legal systems, safety regulations, national or international standards, voluntary standards  and maintenance of safety records to ensure that products are safe for either intended or normally foreseeable use. In Zambia this has been addressed through5 52 (i) of the Act which states that ‘ a person or an enterprise shall not sell any goods  to consumers unless the goods conform to the mandatory safety standard for the class of goods set by the Zambia Bureau of Standards or other relevant competent body”.


iii. The right to be informed

A consumer has the right to be informed by giving him or her facts needed to make informed choice and to be protected against dishonest or misleading advertising and labelling. For example under the competition  and Consumer Protection Act No. 24 of 2010, it is an offence to engage in conduct that is likely to mislead the public that goods are of a particular origin, standard, quality, value, grade, composition, performance, style or model or have a particular history or previous use (section 47).


  1. The right to choose

It is a right of a consumer to select from a range of products and services offered at competitive prices with an assurance of satisfactory quality.

  1. The right to be heard

To have consumer interests represented in the making and execution of government policy and in development of products and services


  1. The right to redress

To receive a fair settlement of just claims, including compensation for misrepresentation, shoddy or unsatisfactory goods.


vii. The right to consumer education

To acquire knowledge and skills needed to make informed, confident choices about goods and services, while being aware of basic consumer rights and responsibilities and how to act on them.


viii.The right to a healthy environment

To live and work in an environment which is non-threatening to the well-being of present and future generation. The International Consumer Rights day every year on 15th March. And this year it is being celebrated under the theme “Consumer Rights in the Digital Age.” It therefore, important that people are acquainted with the roles of organizations such as CCPC, ZABS, ZICTA among others in protecting consumers of various goods and services for social and economic development of the country.




For any enquiry, contact CCPC on the following details;


The Public Relations Officer                                                                                                                            

Competition and Consumer Protection Commission,                      

4th Floor Main Post Office Building,                                    

P.O Box 34919, Lusaka.                                                           

Telephone: 222775/222787,

Toll Free line: 5678,                                                                                                                                  



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