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Tuesday, 16 September 2014

NAFDAC Impounds Expired Hand Sanitisers, Ebola kits

The  Punch reports that...

the National Agency for Food and Drug Administration and Control, has impounded 104 brands of expired hand sanitisers and fake Ebola testing kits at various borders in the country.

The NAFDAC Director-General, Dr. Paul Orhii, who spoke at a press briefing in Lagos, where importers of the fake products were paraded on Tuesday, warned that counterfeiters have flooded the Nigerian market with expired hand sanitisers and  fake Ebola testing kits

Orhii said,“So far, we have quarantined 104 brands that were illegally imported into the country without certification by NAFDAC. It is worrisome to observe that some unscrupulous businessmen have turned the country into a dumping ground by bringing in all sorts of products including expired hand sanitisers.

“We detected that some companies in Lagos were marketing and selling  unevaluated and untested Rapid Response Ebola Virus Test Kit manufactured in Canada.We also found out that the suspect, Mr. John Ojewale was already making contact with a company in China with a view to counterfeiting the ‘ Ebola testing kit’.

“The danger associated with the use of substandard hand sanitisers and untested Ebola test kits is indeed grave and could derail all efforts put in place to contain the spread of the Ebola Virus Disease in the country and we will prosecute offenders in order to protect and promote public health.”

Orhii also said that the agency will prosecute those who have been marketing purported claims to a cure for Ebola cure.

According to him, a professor with the Lagos University Teaching Hospital, Idi-Araba, had made unverified claims that Ewedu could cure Ebola.

Orhii said, “Selling fake Ebola test kit is dangerous, however, what is even more dangerous is the pronouncement of some medical and pharmaceutical professors in these precarious times.

“When a scientist discovers a remedy for a disease, the right thing to do is to publish the results in a medium other scientists respect, and not rush to the press.

“One of the consequences of these unsupported and possibly fraudulent claims is that people may be misled into a false sense of invincibility on account of eating ‘Ewedu’ or Bitter kola and drop their guards. This is a national embarrassment and the Agency will not take such uncorroborated claims by supposedly learned people lightly.”

He also urged the media to support national efforts to contain the spread of the virus by verifying claims of a cure for Ebola from officials at the agency.

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