PCN shuts 373 illegal drug stores in Ogun

PCN can regulate sales, dispensing of veterinary drugs – Registrar
United Bank for Africa

No fewer than 373 illegal pharmacies and patent medicine stores are shut down by the Pharmaceutical Council of Nigeria (PCN) in Ogun.

Newsverge reports that 15 pharmacies and 358 patent medicine stores are shut down for various offences.

Some of the offences range from operating without license, dispensing ethical products without supervision of a pharmacist and poor sanitary condition.

Addressing journalists, Mrs Anthonia Aruya, the Director, Inspection and Monitoring of PCN on Friday in Abeokuta, said that the National Assembly had given the council a marching order to close down all illegal premises nationwide.

Aruya said that the council had been actively carrying out enforcement across 15 states and Ogun was the 16 state visited.

She said that many facilities in Ogun operated without fulfilling requirements for registration while some failed to renew their licenses to operate.

She said that during the exercise, it was discovered that some of the facilities that were used to store products were in poor condition, therefore, the quality and efficacy of such drugs could not be guaranteed.

Aruya said that the illegal pharmacies and drug stores were exposing the public to “serious danger’’.

“This exercise is part of efforts by the PCN to reverse this ugly trend and improve on the level of pharmaceutical service delivery to the good people of Ogun,” she said.

Aruya however said that because of the council’s activities, the owners of unregistered facilities had started visiting its office to regularise their registration status.

“We are making efforts to promptly attend to them and ensure their facilities meet minimum requirements in line with laid down guidelines.

“We are also educating them on the dangers involved in handling drugs that are higher than their status and not on their drug list,” she said.

On whether erring owners would be sanctioned, Aruya said “we’re not punitive, we will rather correct people to do the right thing.”

She said that those who failed to obey instructions and take corrections would definitely be sanctioned and tried in a court of law.

Aruya advised members of the public to always purchase their medicines and simple household remedies from licensed pharmacies and patent medicine shops.