Deputy Director of Enforcement, Stephen Esumobi says the Pharmacists Council of Nigeria (PCN) has sealed 397 drug stores in Abia State for various offences.
He said the action was in a bid to ensure rational distribution and dispersion of safe and quality medicines to the public. According to him, the situation in Abia State is worrisome as most of the premises visited during the enforcement exercise cannot be guaranteed and pose danger to the public.
“What we have seen in Abia State is that many of the premises are not registered and the products are stored in an environment that is not suitable. Some of these products are sensitive to light and can be easily degraded by light and most of the products are not stored at the right temperature. The implication is that many of these products even though they are not expired are already degraded and are no longer good enough for human consumption. Many of the people handling these drugs do not have the requisite knowledge and cannot even pronounce the drugs they are selling” he said.
He also added that many of the stores in Umuahia, the state capital were operating in an unhealthy environment with others selling expired drugs, warning that any pharmacist involved in any form of malpractice would face severe sanction.
A total of 441 premises were visited during the exercise and 360 patent medicine stores, 37 pharmacies were sealed for operating without registration with the PCN among other offences. Twenty-seven premises were also issued compliance directives for poor documentation and failure to produce their licenses.