Pharmacists Council of Nigeria (PCN) has said that it had sealed up 373 illegal pharmacies and patent medicine stores in Kaduna for offences ranging from operating without registration, non-renewal of license to dispensing controlled drugs without supervision.
The Director, Inspection and Monitoring PCN, Anthonia Aruya, told journalists in Kaduna at the weekend that PCN inspected 435 premises made up of 44 pharmacies and 391 patent medicine shops out of which 15 illegal pharmacies and 358 patient medicine stores were sealed.
According to her, five people were also arrested for criminal offences ranging from obstruction of inspectors and breaking of seal.
Speaking further on the national inspection and monitoring exercise, she said that Kaduna is the 13th state where the national enforcement is taking place, adding that the organisation had been taking people to court and even employs alternative dispute resolution.
She said: “A total of 373 premises made up of 15 illegal pharmacies and 358 patent medicine stores were sealed for various offences some of which are operating without registration with Pharmacists Council of Nigeria, failure to renew premises license, dispensing ethical products without the supervision of a pharmacist, poor sanitary conditions among others. One of the core mandates of the PCN is ensuring rational distribution and dispensing of medicines that are safe, effective and of good quality to the public.
“Pharmacies are expected to have pharmacists to supervise the dispensing of ethical products to members of the public. What we observed in Kaduna state is that so many premises commenced operations without fulfilling minimum requirements. Some of these premises store products in environments where the quality, safety and efficacy of pharmaceutical products cannot be guaranteed. This exposes the public to serious danger.
“Others do not have the requisite knowledge or know how to handle the highly ethical drugs in their facilities. This exercise is part of efforts by the PCN to reverse this ugly trend and improve on the level of pharmaceutical services delivery to the people of Kaduna state.”