By Aderogba George
Abuja – Dr Osagie Ehanire, the Minister of Health, has lauded the African Medicine Quality Forum (AMQF) over its quest to address menace of substandard and fake medicines in the region.
The minister gave the commendation on Tuesday in Abuja at the opening of 3rd AMQF meeting.
The theme of the meeting was “Perfect vision for quality medicine in Africa 2020’’.
The minister called on members to facilitate information sharing, saying that this would serve as advocacy platform for Africa in their bid to fight substandard medicines.
Ehanire said that the organisation had worked toward eradication of substandard medicine in Africa, saying that the continent now had a chance to address fake and counterfeit drug.
The minister urged the forum to facilitate information sharing among member countries in the bid to fight substandard medicines.
Prof. Stanley Okolo, the Director-General, West Africa Health Organisation (WAHO), said the impact of coronavirus 2019 on the world economy and global supply chain, particularly pharmaceutical company confirmed the timeliness of the meeting.
Okolo said that continental and regional approach to issue of drug security with incidence of communicable and non-communicable diseases was crucial.
He said that the issue of substandard and falsified medicines circulating in the African market was a double tragedy that had resulted in many deaths annually.
According him, any situation that destroys the pharmaceutical supply chain resulting in shortage of quality medicine can only compound the problem.
He restated the desire of WAHO to provide the region with high quality drugs to address the menace of fake and counterfeit drugs.
Prof Mojisola Adeyeye, the Director-General, NAFDAC said the aim of the conference was to gather African regulators and head of labs to address quality control and quality assurance of medicine.
Adeyeye said it was also to share experience of what members had at different laboratories in Africa in order to strengthen quality assurance.
She said that such experience would help to detect substandard drug.
Adeyeye said that the agency would soon embark on another survey of substandard drugs to ascertain the level of substandard products in the country.