Lagos State Taskforce on Counterfeit, Fake Drugs and Unwholesome Processed Foods has shut 32 pharmacies and patent medicine stores over offences bordering on the illegal operation and operating beyond scope of practice.

Professor Akin Abayomi, the state’s Commissioner for Health, disclosed this on Sunday, after reviewing the report of the first enforcement exercise carried out by the Pharmaceutical Inspectorate Unit of the Ministry for the year 2020.

The affected premises include: Those located in Oniwaya, Ayobo-Ipaja, OrileAgege and Ikola axis of Agege, Akinogun, Dopemu, Mangoro, Cement, Mosan and Alimosho Local Government areas of the state. Abayomi noted that the sealing of the affected health facilities was in accordance with the provisions of Section C34 of the Counterfeit, Fake Drugs and Unwholesome Processed Foods Miscellaneous Provision Act of 1999.

The Commissioner explained further that they were sealed for offences such as operating beyond scope through the sale of ethical products, displaying and storing drugs in unconducive environments which compromises the potency of the drugs thereby rendering them ineffective, operations without a license, engaging unqualified persons to man and dispense drugs to unsuspecting citizens.

He, however, stressed that only licensed patent medicine vendors are authorised to sell only drug products in their original packs in approved pack size as produced by the manufacturing companies as the law prohibits dispensing and wholesaling of drugs by patent medicine vendors as the law also prohibits wholesalers operating outside their scope by selling drugs in retail.

Abayomi assured that the present administration remained committed to putting a halt to the ugly trend of having unqualified personnel deal with drugs and would continue to insist that the environment for the dispensation of medical care should be suitable for the promotion and maintenance of good health.

“This closure is thus part of the government’s renewed efforts to sanitize the drug distribution system and curb proliferation of fake drugs in the State,”