148 pharmacies were sealed for selling unauthorized drugs by the Pharmacists Council of Nigeria in Cross River.
Deputy Director and Head of Enforcement of the council in Abuja, Stephen Esumobi, said the action was taken as part of measures to ensure that only quality drugs are sold to members of the public. This was done after it received a series of reports regarding unregistered premises that engaged in the illegal sale of medicines in the state.
Mr. Esumobi said the medicine shops were also closed for operating without the supervision of a pharmacist, poor storage conditions of drugs and lack of proper education about drugs. He added that some of the registered premises were selling beyond the approved list laid down by PCN.
PCN is incharge of regulating and controlling the education, training and practice of pharmacy in all ramifications as established by the PCN Act 2004.
"At the end of our one week enforcement exercise, we visited 198 drugs premises. 148 of them, comprising two pharmacies, 48 patent medicine shops and 98 unregistered premises were sealed for various offenses. In doing this, we are discharging one of the core mandates of PCN - ensuring rational distribution and dispensing of medicines that are safe, effective and of good quality," he said.
"To carry out this mandate, the PCN established structures such as the Pharmaceutical Inspection Committee in all states of the federation and Abuja. These committees inspect and monitor premises where pharmaceutical activities are carried out in line with PCN guidelines," he explained.
He warned that the Federal Government would not tolerate the indiscriminate sale of drugs without submission to regulatory control. He also advised members of the public to purchase their medicines from licensed pharmacies and propriety medicines shops. The owners of the affected shops would have to visit the PCN office in the state for more education on drug storage and drugs mixing.