The Director-General, National Agency for Food and Drug Administration and Control (NAFDAC), Prof. Christianah Adeyeye, has said that the return of the agency to the nation’s ports and borders, would significantly tackle the increasing cases of smuggling of harmful drugs, narcotics and other chemicals of concerns into the country.
Adeyeye noted that the return of the agency to ports and borders would also boost NAFDAC’s regulatory role of monitoring imports of all substances requiring expertise to monitor their industry-wide application and use.
Commending the recommendation, Adeyeye, in a statement said: ” NAFDAC in collaboration with relevant Ministries, Departments and Agencies (MDA’s) and with the active support of the Office of the National Security Adviser (ONSA), will be returning to Ports and borders to effectively control the importation of narcotic drugs and hazardous chemical substances.
“These substances have been identified to be grossly abused and consequently, posing public health and security threats to the nation.
“I wish to assure Nigerians that the return of NAFDAC officials to the ports and borders will once again, restore NAFDAC’s key responsibility of monitoring imports of controlled drugs and chemical substances which come in various forms, thus requiring expertise to monitor their industry-wide application and use.
Adeyeye said the recommendation was contained in a communique issued at the end of the National Chemical Security Training Conference themed, “Towards a Secured Importation, Distribution, Storage and Use of Chemicals in Nigeria”, organised in Abuja recently by ONSA.
“NAFDAC wishes to commend the Office of the NSA, the Chemical Society of Nigeria and other key stakeholders for recognising NAFDAC as a key player in the national security architecture by this singular act of restoring the presence of NAFDAC officials at all designated Ports of entry and land borders. “The laws that set up NAFDAC empower the Agency to statutorily operate at the ports. The clearance of regulated products outside of the current legal framework poses immediate and life threatening risks to the public as unregistered, spurious and falsified products exit the ports without recourse to the agency’s approval for such products to be in the market”, she said.
The NAFDAC boss assured members of the public that NAFDAC will continue to contribute its quota to government’s efforts in securing lives and property by ensuring that only quality, safe, efficacious and wholesome regulated products and are consumed by Nigerians and smuggling of chemical weapons, harmful drugs and substances into the country is checked.
It will be recalled that NAFDAC and a number of other government Agencies, have been absent from the nation’s Ports and borders since 2011 on orders of the Federal government.