The Ondo State Task Force on Fake and Counterfeit Drugs on Thursday sealed off at least seven pharmaceutical stores in Akure, the state capital.
The pharmaceutical stores were sealed off over various offences ranging from non-possession of operational licences, sale of controlled and expired drugs to storing of drugs in unconducive environments among other unprofessional practices.
Speaking on the closure, Folukemi Aladenola, the permanent secretary of the Ministry of Health, said the enforcement exercise was geared towards eradicating the menace of fake and counterfeit drugs in the state.
Mrs Aladenola added that the operation became necessary as a result of the proliferation and usage of controlled drugs and ones not prescribed and ignorantly purchased from unregistered pharmaceutical stores.
The permanent secretary lauded the state governor, Oluwarotimi Akeredolu, for giving the ministry the necessary support towards ensuring that the incidences of fake and counterfeit drugs were eliminated in the state.
She added that the monitoring of pharmaceutical outlets was a routine one in the ministry, stressing that it would be a continuous exercise.
Mrs Aladenola tasked members of the task force to be resolute in the discharge of their duties.
Similarly, Gbenga Lasekan, the director, Pharmaceutical Services in the Ministry of Health, stated that as a result of the high demand for drugs, some unscrupulous people had resorted to selling fake and counterfeit drugs.
Mr Lasekan said the sale of fake and substandard pharmaceutical products had increased the number failed medical treatments, adding that the objective of constituting the task force was to eliminate the incidence of fake and counterfeit drugs.
He said the enforcement team was determined to make the state safe where people could be so sure that they would get genuine drugs for treatment of any illness.
On the fate of the alleged fake drugs sellers, Mr Lasekan said the committee would meet to determine their fate.
Also speaking, Eniola Akindeko, the chairman of the Pharmaceutical Society of Nigeria (PSN), Ondo State Chapter, said that the taskforce comprised officials of regulative agencies such as the Nigeria Drugs Law Enforcement Agency (NDLEA), National Agency for Drugs Administration and Control (NAFDAC), the ministry and PSN.
According to him, fake drug menace was very prevalent in the society because many patent medicine outlets were not complying with the laid down rules and regulations.
He charged individuals interested in selling drugs to follow the rules and regulations laid down by government, adding that the time was up for defaulters as the taskforce would go after them. (NAN)
Support PREMIUM TIMES' journalism of integrity and credibility
Good journalism costs a lot of money. Yet only good journalism can ensure the possibility of a good society, an accountable democracy, and a transparent government.
For continued free access to the best investigative journalism in the country we ask you to consider making a modest support to this noble endeavour.
By contributing to PREMIUM TIMES, you are helping to sustain a journalism of relevance and ensuring it remains free and available to all.
TEXT AD: To advertise here . Call Willie +2347088095401...