By PETER DURU, Makurdi
The National Agency for Food and Drug Administration and Control, NAFDAC, has finalised plans to present a bill to the National Assembly, prescribing life imprisonment for dealers in counterfeit drugs.
The proposed bill will also prescribe the confiscation of the property of offenders aside other fines.
Director General of NAFDAC, Dr. Paul Orhii disclosed this yesterday while addressing the Senate of the Federal University of Agriculture during his visit to the university Makurdi
Orhii who disclosed that work on the proposed bill has been concluded by a team of legal luminaries who are putting the document together regretted that the manufacture, sale and distribution of fake drugs has become a global phenomena hence requiring proactive action in various countries of the world to stem the tide.
“As an individual, I would have opted for death penalty for offenders as the case in China because the producers of counterfeit drugs are worst than armed robbers, because aside taking the money of their victims, they also ensure their death. But human right groups argue that death penalty was no more acceptable in civilized societies”.
“But the fact is that the fake drugs phenomena is taking a dangerous dimension the world over. With the intensified war against the dealers in narcotics, most of them have now diverted into the production and distribution of counterfeit drugs”.
“Only recently, findings revealed that over 200billion dollars in expended annually in the production of fake drugs the world over”, Orhii said.
He stated that most of the drugs are always destined for Africa and other underdeveloped regions of the world but noted that Nigeria is wining the war against the phenomenon with the percentage of fake drugs in circulation in the country dropping to a single digit level; assuring further that in no distant time the country would be free from the incidents of counterfeit drugs.