About Us

Where we fit in

We mediate and resolves complaints lodged by private citizens against businesses or other entities.

If you have an unresolved complaint against a supplier, you may first attempt to have it resolved by means of alternative dispute resolution with the assistance of the Consumer Goods and Services Ombudsman. We give the supplier the opportunity to resolve the complaint, failing which we help the parties to reach an agreed settlement.

In the relatively few cases that the supplier refuses to cooperate or we are unable to resolve the matter, you may refer it to the National Consumer Commission, which has the legal power to investigate the complaint and impose a compliance notice on the supplier. Either party that is not satisfied by the outcome there can approach the Tribunal to reconsider the matter. Only the Tribunal can impose a fine upon a supplier for contravening the provisions of the CPA.

As the complaint escalates through the process, so the approach becomes more formalistic.

What We do

We receive and assist in resolving complaints by consumers against members (participants) of the Consumer Goods and Services Industry in terms of the Consumer Protection Act (CPA) and enforce the Industry Code of Conduct.


Our services are free of charge.


Where a consumer is dissatisfied with the Goods and/or Services supplied by a participant or with its complaints-handling process.

What makes us Independent?

We are established in terms of section 82(6) of the Consumer Protection Act and accredited by the Minister for Trade and Industry as the industry ombud of the Consumer Goods and Services Industry.

We operate as a Non Profit Company, registered in terms of the Companies Act.

Our Chairperson is a well-respected proponent of consumer law and an independent, non-executive director.

We report to the National Consumer Commission and as a body performing a public function, we must comply with the provisions of the Promotion of Administrative Justice Act 2000 (Act No.2 of 2000) and the Constitution.

In terms of the Code of Conduct:

The CGSO is controlled by the Board. The Board is appointed in accordance with the provisions of the MOI and the composition of the board shall be done in terms of the MOI.

The Ombudsman acts independently and objectively in resolving Disputes and is not influenced by anybody in making his or her decisions. The Ombudsman enjoys security of tenure and can only be dismissed in accordance with fair administrative procedures provided for by the Promotion of Administrative Justice Act 2000 (Act No.2 of 2000) on the grounds of incompetence, gross misconduct, or inability to effectively carry out his or her duties.

The independence of the CGSO and the Ombudsman is further assured by the fact that the Ombudsman and employees of CGSO are: