NAFDAC chief charges Nigerians to look inward to ensure food, drug safety
Assistant Director of the National Agency for Food, Drug Administration and Control (NAFDAC) in charge of Veterinary Medicine Division, Dr. Sadiq Yunus, has charged Nigerians to look inward in solving the current dwindling economy by producing their requirements and shun foreign goods that have local substitutes.
“With our present depressing economy, Nigerians should not allow the country continue to be a dumping ground for other foreign finished products that have substitutes here,” he stressed.
Yunus, leading a team of NAFDAC top officials, was speaking at a one-day training/sensitization workshop on production and post-production handling of antibiotics, vitamins and agrochemicals, organized by NAFDAC in conjunction with Association of Animal Health and Agrochemical Producers, held at Ijegun near Ikotun, Lagos.
The NAFDAC boss explained that the economic problem is an opportunity for Nigerians to develop their own local industries and save our hard-earned foreign exchange from depletion. But he emphasized that their production must pass NAFDAC tests and regulations and meet international standards and practice.
He said NAFDAC was proud of the association’s members products and assured them of NAFDAC support at all times, urging them to comply with World Health Organisation (WHO) documentations in the area of health security, potency and that their products must not degenerate.
Earlier in his welcome address, the Chairman of Association of Animal Health and Agrochemical Producers, Mr. Tunde Adewoye, said his members were doing their best-producing animal health and agrochemicals that compared favourably with imported products, apart from meeting NAFDAC standard and regulations.
He said: “It is in our interest, our country’s interest that the veterinary medicines and allied products directorate has provided us an opportunity to create jobs and look inwards.The era of importation of toothpicks, matches and cotton-bods should be over if Nigeria must survive. The local manufacturers of agrochemicals and animal-health products must strive to compete with the imported products in quality and integrity. Our continuous training in production/packaging and post production handling will surely enhance the quality of our product.
“The prevailing situation is in our favour. With the dwindling value of the naira, it is becoming more expensive to medicate our animals with imported products. When we have certified products, made in Nigeria, we would save foreign exchange used in purchasing these goods. It is cheaper to produce our inputs here under the strict supervision of NAFDAC. The duty on raw materials is low while the duty on imported finished goods is high. For example, a litre of cypermethric 10EC is about $2 while a litre of the technical grade of 96% is $2.99.
“By procuring cyper technical as raw material, we can produce cheaper and sell cheaper even with higher quality.
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