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The National Agency for Food and Drug Administration and Control (NAFDAC) has
vowed to make illicit trade unattractive so as to reduce counterfeit and unwholesome food items and drugs in the country.
The reaffirmation of this commitment is contained in a statement signed by the Director-General of the agency,
Prof. Mojisola Adeyeye, issued to newsmen in Abuja on Tuesday.
The statement indicated that “the reaffirmation of the commitment is in response to campaign of columny against
NAFDAC by fake drug manufacturers and sellers of substandard food and beverages.”
Adeyeye, however, said that “NAFDAC is intensifying efforts to ensure the safety of drugs and foods consumed by Nigerians.”
According to her, the agency stands resolute against any campaign of calumny.
She added that recent exposure of a cartel involved in the production of fake wines and soft drinks in Aba, Abia State, underscored the gravity of the situation, clarifying that NAFDAC brought out the activities of these individuals during the yuletide to safeguard public health.
The NAFDAC boss highlighted the interception of counterfeit products in Eziukwu Market, Aba, as example of NAFDAC’s commitment.
She emphasised that the agency would not be deterred by unfounded allegations, urging the public to be vigilant and report any suspicious activities.
Adeyeye disclosed that officers of the Investigation and Enforcement, Pharmacovigilance and Post Marketing Surveillance Directorates have
been empowered to apprehend those involved in the production, distribution of counterfeit drugs and substandard food items.
She reiterated the agency’s determination to safeguard the health of Nigerians, and urged citizens to assist by providing useful information
on activities of counterfeiters.The NAFDAC boss also called for the support of the 10th National Assembly, and appealed for expedited review of penalties against counterfeiting,
emphasising that stiff penalties would discourage perpetrators from engaging in illicit trade.
She said that NAFDAC, having achieved ISO 9001:2015 certification and World Health Organisation (WHO) Maturity Level 3,
would continue to combat the scourge of substandard medicines.
She pledged that the agency would persist with sensitisation activities across the country in the New Year to ensure that Nigerians are aware of
the threats posed by counterfeit products.
The NAFDAC boss urged consumers to scrutinise branded drinks or drugs before consumption, “and always remember the 4Ps of Place, Price, Packaging and Product
before buying drugs, food, drinks, or alcohol.”
She advised that people must buy goods from the right place, pharmacists, and be cautious of prices below normal or without proper taxes.
On packaging, Adeyeye advised proper inspection, spelling mistakes, unusual bottle shape, manufacturer’s contact information and addresses.
On product, she said people must take note of unpleasant smells, and report any suspicious activities or illegal production of adulterated
products to the nearest NAFDAC office nationwide.
Illicit trade is the production or distribution of a good or service that is considered illegal by a legislature.(www.naija247news.com).