Ado-Ekiti -Members of the Nigeria Association of Proprietors Patient Medicine Dealer, (NAPPMED), on Thursday petitioned the Ekiti State House of Assembly over an alleged harassment of its members by the Pharmaceutical Council of Nigeria, (PCN).
The News Agency of Nigeria,(NAN) reports that NAPPMED’s petition was signed by its State President, Mr Tunde Oke.
The association had earlier held a peaceful protest within the streets of Ado-Ekiti over an alleged harassment and imposition of outrageous operating licence fees on them by the PCN.
NAN reports that the protesters carried placards with various inscriptions like, “Stop Harassing NAPPMED members–PCN, “The Case is in Court, Stop threatening NAPPMED members’’.
Other placards read, “N4 Million Being Generated Yearly from NAPPMED, Where Is It?” among others.
NAN reports that issues included in the petition submitted to the Assembly include, “increase in operational licence-fee from N2,500 to N16,000 be being charged its members.
“Harassment of members by locking-up their shops, increment in tax from N200 to N10, 000.’’
Deputy Speaker Oluwasegun Adewumi pleaded with members of NAPPMED to confine themselves within the ambit of the laws.
Adewumi appealed to the protesters not to allow the peaceful protest to be hijacked by miscreants, promising that their rights would be protected by the Assembly.
“I will plead with you members of NAPPMED that you do not allow political miscreants to hijack this peaceful protest, I can assure you of the assembly’s protection of your rights, “Adewumi said.
He said the House would invite both the executives of the Pharmaceutical Council of Nigeria, (PCN) and NAPPMED with a view to finding a lasting solution to their grievances.
NAN reports that security was beefed-up by combined security agencies around the assembly complex to protect lives and property during the protest.
Meanwhile, the Assembly deliberated on the crisis between members of NAPPMED and its regulatory body, the PCN, at its Thursday’s plenary with a view to finding a solution to the crisis.
The Chairman, House Committee on Health, Dr. Samuel Omotoso, under Matter of Urgent Public Importance ,called for the immediate intervention of the Assembly on the crisis.
According to him, if the allegations in the petition against the regulatory body are not treated on time, it may truncate the existing peace in the state.
The house through its resolutions directed the immediate stoppage of the closure of shops and re-opening of those already shut for businesses by the PCN.
As part of efforts at mediating, the Assembly also directed its House Committee on Health to invite concerned stakeholders for amicable dialogues before Tuesday, next week.