The Pharmacists Council of Nigeria (PCN), says it would shut down open drug markets in Onitsha, Aba and others across the country for non-compliance to the National Drug Distribution Guidelines (NDDG).
Dr Elijah Mohammed, PCN Registrar said this in an interview with the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) in Abuja on Tuesday.
Mohammed noted that the closure of the drug markets became necessary following violations of drug distribution policy.
He explained that the policy provided for the relocation of the open drug markets to a Coordinated Wholesale Centres (CWCs).
The PCN boss said that a lot of emphasis was placed on operators of open drug markets being the biggest players in the NDDG framework.
He said so far, PCN has registered several Mega Wholesale centres and they have also fully commenced operations.
Mohammed identified the markets as a major source of fake and falsified medicines and other health related products.
“Open Drug Markets are unregulated open markets where professionalism have no place as medicines are sold in shops and stores not duly registered.
“The conditions and the environment are not in tandem with approved guidelines for drug distribution. There are no pharmacists to oversee the operations and ethical practices,” he said.
Mohamed noted that their operations have major negative impact on the health of the citizens.
“Existence of the markets also have its impact on the pharmaceutical sector as it contributes to the chaotic drug distribution with negative impacts on the economy.
“It is a common fact that where faking and falsification exists, the growth and development of the local pharmaceutical industry will be severely affected, “ he said.
The registrar explained that CWCs are facilities registered by the PCN for purposes of drug distribution within the framework of the NDDG.
“It will operate under the direction of a Superintendent Pharmacist and with a designated number of subsidiaries to be manned by distribution managers.
“The PCN and NAFDAC being the regulators will have offices in the facilities to ensure compliance with regulations,” he said. (NAN)