From Raji Bello, Sokoto
Officials of the Pharmacists Council of Nigeria (PCN) has sealed no fewer than 380 medicine stores in Sokoto.
The stores which include 8 pharmacies and 352 were sealed for various offenses ranging to operating without registration and failure to renew premises license among others.
The PCN Director of Inspection and Monitoring, Pharm. (Mrs.) Anthonia Aruya disclosed this in Sokoto at a press conference.
Aruya said the exercise was carried out to ensure rational distribution and dispensing of medicines that are safe, effective and of good quality to the public.
She explained that the PCN team visited a total of 513 premises comprising 26 Pharmacies and 487 Patent Medicine Shops across the state.
According to her: “A total of 360 premises made up of 8 unregistered Pharmacies and 352 Patent Medicine Stores were sealed for various offences some of which include operating without registration with Pharmacists Council of Nigeria, failure to renew premises licence.
“Other include; dispensing ethical products without the supervision of a pharmacist and poor sanitary conditions.”
Aruya also added that one person was also arrested for operating illegal and unhygienic medicine store.
She however advised those intending to start pharmaceutical businesses to get in touch with the council offices for proper guidance.
“Pharmacist of Council of Nigeria cannot guarantee that drugs sold in unregistered outlets are of the same integrity as specified by the manufacturers since they have not submitted to regulation that ensure maintenance of appropriate standards for handling such products.
“Members of the public are advised to purchase their medicine from licensed Pharmacies and simple household remedies from licensed Patent and Propriety Medicine shops.” Aruya explained.
She disclosed the National Assembly has given the council a marching order to close down all illegal premises nationwide, as well as added impetus to intensify efforts at sanitizing the drug distribution chain.