Deputy director urges herbal medicine producers to observe NAFDAC’s guidelines

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ONITSHA – The National Agency for , Drug Administration and Control (NAFDAC) on Wednesday enjoined herbal medicine practitioners to abide by the agency’ rules guiding practice.

Mrs Phebean Malomo-Odu, the agency’ Deputy , Herbal and Neutriceutical Division of Drug Evaluation and Research, gave the advice during a one-day workshop for herbal medicine practitioners in the zone, held in Onitsha, Anambra.

Malomo-Odu said that because herbal medicine had been embraced worldwide there was the need for practitioners in Nigerian to package end products in line with international standards as they could be a massive source of foreign exchange.

“They should have good manufacturing practice. You cannot introduce to a finished product but you can build-in right from the raw material to the end product.

“That is NAFDAC to ensure that the practitioners adhere to Good Manufacturing Practice (GMP).

“So, with that we would know that it is not only about the quantity of what we take out but also that is built into the product,“ she said.

She advised the practitioners to ensure 100 per cent cleanliness in manufacturing rooms, proper ventilation of the rooms, proper of each herb, the process involved and herbal medicines produced.

In a paper titled: `Extant Regulatory Control for Herbal Advertisement`, NAFDAC’ Deputy , Advertisement Control Division, Mrs. Sinmidele Onabajo, said that all advertised herbal products should be registered with NAFDAC.

Onabajo said that the agency would verify all advert placements on herbal products before they were published or aired.
She added that days of making unfounded claims about the efficacy and multiple functions of a single herbal product in the media without NAFDAC and authorisation were over.

“We are here to educate them on the procedures to get an advertisement permit. To sure that before they go ahead and advertise, they have that permit with them.

“Because when they have the permit with them, we would have taken care of all the excesses of the claims they intend to advertise.

“So the permit is the key to advertisement in the states.

“And in the event that they don’t have it, we would now carry sanctions to sure that only the people who have the necessary permit have the air to be able to inform the people, so that they can the right choices,“ she said.

Chief Eugene Nwachukwu, the Vice-, National Association of Nigerian Traditional Medicine Practitioners (NANTMP), said that there had been growing patronage of herbal products by Nigerians within the past 10 years.

Nwachukwu, who is also the Co-ordinator of NANTMP, said that the only differences between herbal medicines from , , Pakistan and those from Nigeria were processing and packaging.

“The workshop has sensitised us to the need to package our products in a more dignifying manner by keeping our manufacturing plants clean and following the best standards of processing the raw materials for the end product to meet international standards.

“This workshop is one of the best things to happen to my association in the as well as the certificate given to each one of us by NAFDAC for participating,“ Nwachukwu said. (NAN)[eap_ad_3]