Temu in Hot Water Again for Selling Illegal Wi-Fi and Bluetooth Devices

Temu in Hot Water Again for Selling Illegal Wi-Fi and Bluetooth Devices

  • Temu faces backlash for selling uncertified electronics in South Africa, prompting concerns from Icasa
  • They purchased three items to investigate, revealing Wi-Fi and Bluetooth devices lacking required Icasa and NRCS approvals
  • Meanwhile, South African Revenue Service's new 45% import duty plus VAT on clothing aims to level the playing field against Temu and Shein, stirring controversy among netizens

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Reitumetse Makwea, a Briefly News current affairs journalist in Pretoria, South Africa, has covered current affairs-related news at The Citizen and Rekord Noweto for over five years.

Temu in trouble for selling illegal dongles
Vendors are offering products with radio transceivers, like Wi-Fi and Bluetooth dongles, that don’t have approval from the Icasa. Images: Jakub Porzycki and Joan Cros.
Source: Getty Images

In a plot twist that will ruffle a few feathers with netizens, Temu, an online marketplace, finds itself in hot water again.

This time, over selling electronics sans the necessary regulatory thumbs-up from South African authorities.

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From Wi-Fi to Bluetooth devices, it seems some gadgets slipped through the cracks without the obligatory stamps of approval from the Independent Communications Authority of South Africa (Icasa) and the National Regulator for Compulsory Specifications (NRCS).

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Local distributors and importers frequently argue that the procedures for obtaining regulatory clearance are burdensome.

Non-compliant devices

According to MyBroadband, Temu's shelves contain devices that might not be as compliant as Icasa would like.

See the post on X below:

"MyBroadband purchased three items from Temu to investigate whether the platform permits the sale of electronics lacking proper certification.
"All three products contained radio transmitters—two Wi-Fi devices and one Bluetooth device. Among them was a Wi-Fi smart switch that requires connection to mains power, necessitating approval from the NRCS in the form of a letter of authority (LOA).

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"The items arrived in two weeks. After spending one week in transit internationally, the parcel spent another week with the courier following customs clearance.

The report also noted that upon inspection, it was discovered that although the devices bore markings indicating compliance with U.S. FCC and European Union CE standards, none had an Icasa sticker.

Taxman came for Temu and Shein

Starting from the 1st of July, 2024, the South African Revenue Service (Sars) imposed a 45% import duty alongside VAT on all clothing imports.

This decision aims to rectify the perceived advantage enjoyed by platforms such as Temu and international companies like Shein, who allegedly used tax loopholes to undercut local retailers.

However, netizens were not happy with the Tax.

Tax hikes will kill us: Man offers tips to pay less on Temu and Shein's orders coming to SA

Briefly News reported that the Mzansi tax hikes on Temu and Shein clothing orders coming to South Africa dizzy Mzansi.

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A man on TikTok, Brenden Roberts, has cleared the confusion about the tax hikes for clothing orders.

Netizens are still boggled by the quickening of tax rates implemented from the 1st of July.

Source: Briefly News

Reitumetse Makwea avatar

Reitumetse Makwea (Editor) Reitumetse Makwea is a Current Affairs journalist at Briefly News. She has a National diploma, Advanced diploma and Post-graduate diploma in Journalism from the Tshwane University of Technology. She first worked as a student journalist and freelancer for Caxton's Record Noweto and later joined The Citizen News, where she worked for a little over 3 years covering politics, environmental news, business, education, and health. Reitumetse joined Briefly News in 2024. Email: reitumetse.makwea@briefly.co.za