Pharmacists Council of Nigeria has sealed 236 pharmaceutical shops in Ekiti out of the 240 inspected for offences ranging from illegal sale of medicines and operating without the supervision of a pharmacist.
The PCN Deputy Director and Head of Enforcement, Mr. Stephen Esumobi, who briefed journalists in Ado Ekiti on the outcome of the exercise said 12 pharmacies and 224 patent medicine shops were affected.
According to him, the remaining four premises cleared by the Council during the raid still have problems ranging from poor documentation and poor storage condition of medicines.
He described the situation in Ekiti as “worrisome” calling on the State Government to assist in bringing the situation under control.
The PCN boss expressed worry that a top government official led the protest against the activities of the Council while the task force teams were carrying out the inspection.
He said, “This is the only state where we met this kind of resistance. The manner in which the people (Patent Medicine Sellers) protested suggested that it was a premeditated attack.
“They threw dangerous objects into our office in Ekiti and broke the burglar glass in protest. They threw raw eggs. We deliberately withdrew from the exercise as a responsible organisation because it could have led to a bloodshed if the Police were not professionals in handling the protest.
“It surprised me that people had to protest in that manner and numbers. It showed that it was a premeditated action. We are not out to make life difficult for them, but to ensure compliance to simple rules. As a regulatory body, we cannot allow the sale of drugs that can kill innocent people.
“We learnt that some Pharmacists are compromising with them and whoever is caught will be deregistered,” he threatened.
Esumobi urged the State Ministry of Health to continue to engage drug dealers in constant seminars and workshops to safe the people untimely death.
“Some of the registered premises are selling beyond their approved list or keeping and stocking highly ethical and controlled substances in a manner that violates laid down rules and regulations to the detriment of the citizens.
“If this trend is allowed to continue, it will impact negatively on the health of the citizens of the state. This exercise is an attempt to reverse this ugly situation.”