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Nigeria can attain self-sufficiency in medicine production – NAFDAC

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Moji Adeyeye, the director-general of the National Agency for Food and Drug Administration and Control (NAFDAC), says Nigeria can attain self-sufficiency in the manufacturing of medicine if the right policies are made.

“With an enabling business and regulatory environment, the country can meet the requirements of quality and safe medicines, regardless of the current transient economic travails,” Adeyeye said on Wednesday in Abuja.

According to her, on resumption at NAFDAC in late 2017, the top management of the agency formulated policies targeted at enhancing the capacity of local drug manufacturers to meet global Good Manufacturing Practice (GMP) standards.

She added that the management also had the idea of promoting collaboration with regulatory institutions, “which led to the conduct of a nationwide GMP roadmap, supported by our technical partners (UNIDO and USAID).

“As a follow up to the outcome of the GMP roadmap, several regulatory directives (RDs) which include the 5+5 RD, the expansion of NAFDAC’s ceiling list, new RD on establishment of pharmaceutical plants in Nigeria and the centralised GMP inspection for pharma plants were formulated.

“The whole essence of these directives was to improve local drug manufacturing in line with global best practice and improved competitiveness of Nigerian pharma industry in the global space while projecting self-sufficiency in local production of essential medicines,” the DG said in a statement.

She added that NAFDAC was set up by an act of the parliament to regulate and control the manufacture, importation, exportation, distribution, advertisement, sale and use of food and drugs, as well as cosmetics, medical devices, packaged water, chemicals and detergents (collectively known as regulated products).

“This mandate no doubt bestows on the agency the onerous responsibility of ensuring that only regulated products that are safe, effective and of the right quality are always available and accessible for Nigerians.”

She said that the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic was still fresh, adding that Nigeria’s pharmaceutical sector was badly hit by the refusal of exporting nations to open their borders for global trade in active pharmaceutical ingredients (APIs) and finished pharmaceutical products (FPPs).