NAFDAC threatens packaged water producers over poor GMP

 By Chioma Obinna

The National Agency for Food and Drug Administration and Control, NAFDAC, on Sunday vowed to shut down packaged water production facilities that fail the Good Manufacturing Practice, GMP, requirements even as it pledges to collaborate with the various associations to sanitise the packaged water sector of the economy.

The Director-General of NAFDAC, Prof Mojisola Adeyeye who spoke recently in Abuja with 412 packaged water producers in Nigeria appealed to them to always maintain the level of compliance with NAFDAC regulatory requirements for which their products were registered.

Adeyeye expressed dismay that shortly after procuring registration approval, many of the over 16,000 registered producers of packaged water across Nigeria lower standards and produce the essential commodity under despicable conditions, putting the health of the Nigerian consuming public at risk.

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“Today we are gathered on this platform as producers of packaged water and we all know that the situation in Nigeria today is such that the entire Nigerian populace (including the healthy, elderly, pregnant women, children, and the weak with low immunity) depend on packaged water for sustenance, as many believe falsely or rightly that the municipal water, where available, may hardly be safe for drinking’’, she said.

Describing water as a unique product, because it has no alternative,  Adeyeye said everybody needs water or at least water-based products for hydration, proper digestion of food, drugs, and other human needs to sustain life. ‘’Water is life’’.

The NAFDAC boss, however, posited that water can only sustain life when it is available for drinking in a safe and potable form otherwise, it could cause health complications and even lead to death.

‘’You are in the noble business of providing Nigerians with safe drinking water; but if you engage in activities that fall short of standards and regulatory requirements, you may be responsible for illness and even death of innocent Nigerians.’

She maintained that packaged water must meet requirements of NAFDAC regulations and provisions of the Nigerian Industrial standards for packaged water, noting that the Agency would intensify its routine monitoring to ensure consistent compliance on GMP and other requirements; and apply appropriate sanctions on defaulters and violators.

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