The National Agency for Food and Drug Administration and Control (NAFDAC) has revealed how Nigeria can reduce the importation of drugs from its present 70% to 30% by 2025.
The food and drug regulator who is working towards making it possible said that this could be achieved through increased local manufacturing of drugs.
According to NAN, this was disclosed by the Director-General of NAFDAC, Prof. Mojisola Adeyeye, on Wednesday in Lagos, as she also read the riot to drug manufacturers in the country.
Adeyeye said that increasing local drug manufacturing would help curb the prevalence of substandard drugs and ensure drug security in the country.
What the NAFDAC Director-General is saying
Adeyeye noted that any country that is over-dependent on importation of medicine, will get substandard drugs adding that a nation that does not have drug security is not secured in other aspects.
The NAFDAC boss said, “We are using multifaceted approaches to curb substandard and falsified medicine in the country. If a country is over-dependent on importation of medicine, such country will get substandard drugs and if not for COVID-19, we wouldn’t have woken up from our slumber as a country.
“When I started my tenure, local manufacturing of medicine became my focus because when you increase local manufacturing you are not just giving more jobs or increasing the GDP.
“Most, importantly, you are safeguarding the health of the nation because if somebody is falsifying something on Ota, for example, we can get there within one hour and something like that had happened before.
“So, we want to change the 70 per cent importation of drugs into the country to 30 per cent by 2025, so that as a nation we can say we have drug security because we don’t have that now. A country that is not drug secure is not secured in other facets”.
Adeyeye pointed out that the agency had also tightened the belt around shipment of drugs into the country.
She said, “We have read our riot act to drugs manufacturers who bring their drugs to the country if they want to be friends in trade with Nigeria.
“If they want to be friends with us, they should do what we want and not send what will kill our people and that is why we have tightened shipment of drugs into the country.
“We have been to China and India and now we deal with the lab directly not the agents like what it used to be before.’’
What you should know
NAFDAC had been on an enforcement drive against substandard drugs or for non-compliance of its policy with the shutdown of some pharmaceutical companies.
It also sometime in August warned Nigerians to beware of social media products even as they destroyed fake, substandard, and unwholesome products worth about N2.5 billion.
The Director-General of the agency said that the social media had been used to advertise spurious substandard, unsafe, and falsified NAFDAC regulated products and lamented that regulated products such as cosmetics, and products for enlargement of burst and buttocks have flooded the social media.