PCN seals 469 pharmacies, medicine shops in Bauchi
The Pharmacists Council of Nigeria (PCN) has sealed 469 illegal pharmacies and patent medicine stores in Bauchi State.
The Director and Head of Enforcement Department of the council, National Headquarters, Pharm. Stephen Esumobi made this known at the North East Zonal Office in Bauchi, during a press conference yesterday.
Stephen said that the PCN enforcement team started the exercise in 2019 by visiting premises of identified pharmacies and patent medicine stores. It found that some of them were operating without registering with the PCN while those that have registered, failed to renew their certificates.
According to him, between 2019 and 2022, 598 premises were visited. “This comprises 557 patent medicines shops and 41 pharmacies, of which 469 premises were sealed; 23 pharmacies and 446 patent medicine shops. 13 compliance directives were issued for various offences such as poor sanitary conditions, poor documentation and non-display of premises and pharmacists annual licences,” he said.
He further said that the premises were sealed while the owners were given opportunity to fulfill conditions for registration. “After most of the premises fulfilled conditions for registration, they were unsealed. The office took pains to sensitise patent medicine vendors and other medicine dealers on the need to continue to comply with regulations in the interest of public health.”
Esumobi said that despite the efforts of PCN, so many premises returned to their old ways because of financial gains. “While some premises took steps to operate in line with regulations, so many others chose to operate in breach of it.
“Many products in these erring premises may no longer be fit for human consumption due to poor handling. The exposure of these products to adverse environmental factors like high temperature, humidity and direct sunlight could compromise their quality, safety, and efficacy.
“It is in the light of the above that the council had no other option than to reseal these premises during the current national enforcement exercise. The local council visited include the following: Bauchi, Toro, Katagum, Alkaleri, Kirfi, Misau, Zaki, Gamawa Giade, Shira, Jamaare, Itas, Ganjuwa, Ningi, Dass, Tafawa Balewa, Bogoro and Darazo,” he said.