Many Ghanaians are concerned about the efficacy of the drugs they are likely to ingest when they are ill. But they are equally alarmed by the Food and Drugs Authority (FDA’s) claim of discovering over one hundred unregistered drugs, stashed in “secret warehouses” owned by Tobinco Pharmaceuticals Company Limited.
Now, the question lingering on the minds of many is how could these huge imports of medicines escape the scrutiny of the regulator (FDA)?
A former Chief Executive Officer of the FDA argues that in spite of the fact that the work of the regulator is to protect the public good, “there is the law and there is the practice. I agree…the world over; the law is that, pre-registration before the drugs comes into the jurisdiction”.
“The registration confers on the company a marketing authorization. The word is, marketing authorization…you are authorized to market it in that jurisdiction and that is the law but with all that has been said by the FDA, I would like to know if they (FDA) have only just realized that there are over a hundred unregistered drugs imported by Tobinco? Were these drugs not imported into the country? Or they just dropped from heaven? Or they were being brought into the country through irregular routes?” Hon. Emmanuel Kyeremanteng Agyarko quizzed.
The Member of Parliament (MP) for the Ayawaso West Wuogon Constituency was certain that the drugs were imported through the Tema Hobour and further questioned how between fifty to one hundred containers of medicines, each year, could have escaped the checks of the FDA.
Addressing the issue on NEAT FM, Hon. Agyarko explained that importers of regulated products are required by law to make a declaration of the goods on the GC Net platform, for approval by the regulator before it sets sail for Ghana.
“….i now hear them (FDA) saying the law cannot be changed to suit one person but I am asking if the law was not there in the two, three years preceding? The law was there. So are they saying they did not see what was going on? Adakabre, If they did not see, then it’s as a result of their blindness,” he opined.
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