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Be cautious when shopping this season, CAC warns

Published:Sunday | November 20, 2016 | 12:00 AMOkoye Henry

The Consumer Affairs Commission (CAC) is advising shoppers to be cautious this Christmas season on what, how and where they buy products and services.

The forewarning from the CAC comes in light of the fact that more than 1,000 official consumer complaints island-wide have been reported to the agency, from April to October of this year, which it considers a reasonably high figure.

"The top three complaints are electrical and appliances at 25.9 per cent, utilities at 15.69 per cent and other services at 11.76 per cent," outlined CAC complaint officer Cleveland Parker while speaking at last Thursday night's official opening of Computer Depot's third branch at the Baywest Shopping Centre in Montego Bay, St James.

"However, we have so far gained from companies - and this is all over Jamaica - $6,138,024.64 in refunds and compensation that they have had to pay out to consumers whose rights they have breached," he added.

Parker said consumers should make sure they get value for money this festive season with proper warranty and after-sales service which are notable issues being tackled by the CAC.

"Proper, good business practices are among the things that the CAC has a keen interest in, to ensure that businesses and customers are able to get the value for their hard-earned money," Parker explained.




He lauded Computer Depot for its years of providing quality after-sales services with zero complaints, which, he said, results from the company's highly knowledgeable and customer-friendly staff.

The new Baywest branch is estimated to have an investment of over $10 million and will offer all the products and services found at the other two outlets at Barnett Street and Fairview in the Second City.

"We saw the need to put a branch within the town area where everybody can have access - and it's a worthy investment," said co-owner Nadia Stanberry, who runs the 12-year-old company with her partner Damian Chue.

"You can find the same products and items like motherboards, smartphones, memory cards, hard drives, radios, surveillance cameras; and we sell top brands like Dell, HP, Lenovo, Asus, Canon, Samsung, Forza and much more," Stanberry added.