National Agency for Food and Drugs Administration and Control, NAFDAC, has impounded assorted counterfeit drugs worth over N40 million in Asaba, Delta State and also apprehended a 32- year-old man suspected to be the owner.
The suspect, identified as Mr Paul Eli, was arrested at his residence in Asaba, where he was reportedly packaging the counterfeit drugs with mobile authentication number to make it appear as genuine to the unsuspecting patients.
The drugs found in his 3-bedroom apartment, where he operates from include Maloxine, Lumatem (anti-maleria drugs), LOFNAC (for body pains relief), Buscomac (for stomach pain relief) and Rysovin (anti-fungal drug) alongside already printed mobile authentication numbers.
Eli, a graduate of Management Science from the University of Nigeria, Nnsuka, told newsmen, said that he had been in the business for over one year, adding that he does the packaging of the drugs after receiving them from his business associate, whom he simply named as Achubuike in Lagos but denied knowledge of the drugs being fake.
Disclosing that he distributes the drugs in Sabogari area, Kano through his business partner, Chubuike, the suspect said the drugs were being imported from India by his partner in Lagos. He added that the drugs seen in his possession were slightly above N1 million as against NAFDAC assessment of over N40 million.
On the whereabout of his family, he said he was not married, adding that he gets the drugs through waybill and also distributes same through waybill. He said the drugs were yet to be tested to ascertain their authenticity.
Fielding questions from newsmen, Chairman of the Federal Taskforce on Counterfeit and Fake Drugs and Unwholesome Process Foods, Mr Kingsley Ejiofor, said they came to Delta following incidents of counterfeit drugs as an agency and as a taskforce on Taskforce on Counterfeit and Fake Drugs and Unwholesome Process Foods.
Ejiofor who is also the acting Director, Investigation and Enforcement Directorate, NAFDAC disclosed that they were able to track down the suspect due to consumer complaint and urged members of the public to report to them any anti-counterfeiting activity.