NAFDAC Destroys Fake Products Worth N1.43bn In SE/SS
The National Agency for Food Drugs Administration and Control (NAFDAC) on Thursday destroyed substandard, falsified and expired regulated product worth N1.4 billion in South East and South South geopolitical zones.
The substandard products were destroyed at the Anambra Waste Dump, Awka by officials of NAFDAC in company of sister agencies including Police, NDLEA, NSCDC and FRSC.
Prof. Mojisola Adeyeye, the Director General of NAFDAC who conducted the exercise the destruction was part of efforts to rid Nigerian market of unwholesome products and engender public confidence.
Adeyeye who was represented by Mr Kingsley Ejiofor, Director of Investigation and Enforcement said the items include seized from manufacturers, importers, expired and those voluntarily turned-in by regulation compliant companies.
She said others were those confiscated by Customs Service which found their way in circulation including unregistered drugs, improperly stored vaccines, tramadol, Rohypinol intercepted on Benin-Asaba road and other fake medicinal products intercepted at different times.
The DG said a warehouse of banned, controlled, fake and counterfeit products worth millions of naira had been discovered in Oyi Local Government of Anambra and was awaiting destruction pending the setting aside of a Court Order.
She said apart form seizures and destruction, the Agency had been able to secure conviction of culprits ranging from one year to five years as well as option of fine.
According to her, drug counterfeiting is an act of economic and also a serious threat to public health, NAFDAC is proactively tackling this challenge by engagement of political, traditional and religious leaders in sensitising the public.
“The public destruction of spurious products today would eliminate the risk of reintroduction into their Nigerian markets and it is a proof of NAFDAC’s resolve to safeguard the health that only genuine medicines are wholesome are sold in Nigeria.
“The estimated street value of the products destroyed today is N1,429, 580 billion and they include antibiotics, vaccines, alcoholic, cosmetic and chemical products,” she said.
Adeyeye also raised the alarm on circulation of fake covid-19 vaccines in Africa and warned Nigerians not to take the vaccine from diverted stock or unapproved locations.
Mr Boniface Muonurikpe, Chairman Medical Section of Ochanja Central Market, Onitsha described the public destruction as a welcome development in spite the fact that millions of naira was involved.
Muonurikpe said market associations were willing to work with relevant regulators to ensure that only genuine products were sold noting that activities of fakers were robbing Nigerian markets of public confidence.
Mrs Olajumoke Oyetola, Director of NAFDAC in South East said officers in the zone would STOL at nothing in the mission to sanitise the markets of spurious products.
Oyetola appealed to manufacturers and importers to place the lives of Nigerians above other consideration as many who sought relief by purchasing controlled products ended up losing their lives as a result of consuming fake products.