The National Agency for Food and Drug Administration and Control (NAFDAC) has said drug hawkers are major distributors and suppliers of narcotic medicines to criminal networks such as armed bandits, insurgents, kidnappers and armed robbers.
The Director-General of NAFDAC, Prof. Moji Christianah Adeyeye, raised the alarm about the menace of drug hawking at a one-day media sensitization workshop on the dangers of drug hawking and ripening of fruits with Calcium Carbide.
The sensitisation workshop was organized by the North-East Zone of NAFDAC in Bauchi yesterday.
She said the illicit trade constitutes a serious threat to our national security.
According to her, most of the drugs sold do not meet the quality, safety and efficacy requirements of regulated medicines.
This is as she vowed that NAFDAC remains resolute in eradicating the illicit trade.
In her words, “Drugs are sensitive life-saving commodities which should not be sold on the streets/motor parks or open markets just like any other article of trade. I wish to warn you that any drug hawker arrested by NAFDAC will be prosecuted, and will face a jail term, and our Enforcement Officers are currently carrying out a synchronised nationwide operation.
“No offender will be spared from facing the full wrath of the law. In this regard, we solicit the cooperation and support of all other law enforcement agencies, Journalists, and well-meaning Nigerians in ridding the country of this harmful and shameful practice.”
Adeyeye, who was represented by NAFDAC’s Director, Chemical Evaluation and Research, Dr. Leonard Omokpariola, revealed there had been calls by well-meaning Nigerians on the need to take stringent regulatory actions to stem the dangerous tide of drug hawkers and sellers of ripened fruits with Calcium Carbide.
She lamented that fake drugs and the ripening of fruits with chemicals are two dangerous practices by unscrupulous persons that also kill unsuspecting citizens.