The Senate yesterday directed its committee on health to urgently investigate an allegation that 42 anti-malaria drugs banned by the European Union (EU) in all countries are still being stockpiled, sold and consumed in Nigeria.
The action of the Senate was informed by the adopted motion sponsored by Theodore Orji representing Abia central senatorial district titled, “Anti-malaria drugs banned by European Union, still being sold and consumed in Nigeria; the need for Senate to investigate.”
In his lead debate, Orji affirmed that the reason for the ban of the drugs was because they cause kidney failure. EU countries were warned not to stock any drugs containing substances like plasmotrin, artequin, co-arinate, arco, artecon and dialquin, yet, it was alleged that they are still being stockpiled, sold and consumed in the country.
The President of the Nigerian Medical Association (NMA), Prof. Mike Ogirima, was said to have confirmed the delisting of the dangerous drugs.
Against the backdrop of the dangers posed by the drugs, the Senate flayed the National Agency for Food and Drug Administration and Control (NAFDAC) and Standards Organisation of Nigeria (SON) for not adequately waging the war against the influx of fake and sub-standard items into the country.
The lawmakers observed that the drugs on the banned list are very popular, particularly in the rural communities where there is little or no knowledge of the dangers, and where they are obtained across the counter with or without prescription.