DG NAFDAC, Mrs. Yetunde Oni
Laleye Dipo in Minna
The National Agency for Food, Drugs Administration and Control (NAFDAC), says over N2.1 billion worth of fake and counterfeit drugs were destroyed throughout the country in the last one year.
The last destruction of drugs valued at N144m took place recently in Minna, the Niger State capital.
The Acting Director General of NAFDAC, Mrs Yetunde Oni, who was represented by the Director, Special Duties, Alhaji Abubakar Jimoh, said some of the products were voluntarily surrendered to the agency by their owners, after realising that they were either fake, substandard, unwholesome, or had expired.
Jimoh, who supervised the destruction of the products at the state’s permanent refuse disposal dump site, along Beji/Zungeru road in Bosso Local Government, said latest statistics from the World Health organisation had shown that fake drugs valued at over N200 billion were floating globally, looking for countries to berth.
“Circulation of fake and counterfeit drugs is a spectre that is hunting the entire world.”
Speaking earlier at a stakeholders’ forum at the Federal Secretariat Complex in Minna, Jimoh disagreed with the Niger State Commander of the NDLEA Mr. Joseph Iweajunwa that the circulation of fake drugs was on the increase in the country.
The NDLEA commander had at the forum claimed increase in circulation of substandard drugs saying that Onitsha in Anambra State was notorious for this.
However contrary to the claim Jimoh said, “there is a decline which had been internationally acclaimed.
“We at NAFDAC will rid the nation of fake drugs and the counterfeiters. The destruction is very massive because one drug can wipe out a whole village. Such fake drugs had been found to be largely responsible for the rising cases of diseases associated with liver, kidney and the heart.”
He further disclosed that in its quest to clean up the system much progress was being made as the system recorded only three per cent of fake drugs in 2014, down from 19 per cent recorded in 2011.
Earlier in her speech, NAFDAC Zonal Coordinator for North-Central, Mrs. Josephine Dayilim, said the exercise was to ensure that the drugs were being destroyed publicly to instill confidence in members of the public and put a lie to the allegations that the seized items were being used or sold secretly.