The National Agency for Food, Drugs Administration and Control (NAFDAC), on Tuesday in Sokoto flagged off a nationwide sensitization campaign to combat falsified medical products and unwholesome food.
Speaking at the event, Director–General (DG) of NAFDAC, Prof. Moji Adeyeye, said it was common knowledge that Nigeria had a huge share of the global problem of falsified medical products and unwholesome food.
“The advent of COVID-19 Pandemic has aggravated the problem with the challenge posed by substandard and falsified Personal Protective Equipment.
“The sensitization campaigns will therefore contribute significantly to Federal Government’s concerted efforts to inform and alert the public on inherent dangers of using those spurious regulated products,” Adeyeye said.
Represented by Mr Dauda Gimba, Director, North West Zone, Kaduna, the DG explained that the public awareness campaign was one of the veritable regulatory mechanisms put in place by NAFDAC to promote and protect the health of the people.
“A well informed, sensitized and educated citizenry is the bedrock of effective regulation.
“This is why today’s event is another major milestone in our bid to protect Nigerians against the deleterious effects of unwholesome food, falsified medical products, harmful cosmetics, poor water and other substandard regulated products.
“The key objective of this sensitization programme is to intensify and expand the scope of our informal and formal behavioural change.
“This is in order to reach the vulnerable communities, especially at the grassroots. Dissemination of food and drug safety information is an important aspect of our regulatory work.
“The campaign themes are multifaceted with clear educative messages aimed at arousing the consciousness of the public about the various infractions that impact negatively on our healthcare delivery system,” Adeyeye said.
She mentioned some of the campaign themes to include, Dangers of buying medicines from hawkers, Abuse of Codeine and self-medication especially among youths; and the dangerous effects of using Kerosene tanker to load groundnut oil.
The Sultan of Sokoto, Alhaji Sa’ad Abubakar, represented by the District Head of Gagi, lauded the Agency for diligently protecting the lives of Nigerians.
Abubakar, who described the campaign as timely and apt, also commended President Muhammadu Buhari for the country’s transformation at all levels.
The Sultan pledged the sustained support of traditional institutions to ensure the success of the Agency’s activities.
The highlight of the event was a roadshow to Sokoto central and old markets, a central motor park and other major streets in the metropolis. (NAN)