Why Pharmacists Council Shuts 236 Medicine Stores in Ekiti
Pharmacists Council of Nigeria has raised the alarm over increasing number of illegal drug dealers in Ekiti State, revealing that a total of 236 pharmacies and medicine shops were sealed off during an enforcement raid.
According to the council, the raid conducted by the officers of the drug regulatory body was not meant to send people out of jobs or create unnecessary panic in the system, but to ensure compliance to rules, particularly on proper registration, to safeguard the health of the Nigerian citizens.
Speaking with journalists in Ado Ekiti recently, the PCN Deputy Director and Head of Enforcement, Mr. Stephen Esumobi, said out of 240 premises visited, only four were given clean bill, describing the development as dangerous and inimical to the people’s wellbeing.
Esumobi revealed that they committed offences ranging from unauthorized sale of medicines, operating without the supervision of a pharmacist and poor storage and documentation facilities.
He said the clarification over the allegation that the body was becoming too coercive became imperative, in view of the protest staged against the closure of some medicine shops by Association of Drug dealers in Ado Ekiti on a recent Thursday.
“It surprised me that people had to protest in that manners and numbers. It shows that it was a premeditated action. We are not out to make life difficult for them, but to ensure compliance to simple rules. As a regulatory body, we cannot allow the sale of drugs that can kill innocent people.
“It is bad that Nigeria is a society where people don’t do research or take statistics about happenings. We have not asked about the cause of increasing kidney failure in Nigeria. We learnt that some Pharmacists are compromising with them and whoever caught will be deregistered”, he said.
Esumobi urged the State Ministry of Health to continue to engage drug dealers in constant seminars and workshops, to prevent calamity from befalling unsuspecting members of the public who may not be able to differentiate the registered ones from the quacks .
“Our office received reports of the activities of unregistered premises , engaging in illegal sale of medicines in Ekiti. Since many of them were not recommended for the sale of medicines, the quality, safety and efficacy of drugs sourced from them cannot be guaranteed.
“Even some of the registered premises were selling beyond their approved list. Some keep stocks in a manner that violates laid down rules and regulations to the detriment of the citizens. If the ugly trend is allowed to continue, it will have negative impact on the citizens. What we did was an attempt to reverse the ugly situation”, he said.
He urged the people to purchase their drugs from licensed pharmacies and patent medicine vendors , to prevent their health from being jeopardized by the actions of those he described as saboteurs. (ThisDayLive)