Operatives of the National Agency for Food and Drug Administration and Control have arrested a 32-year-old businessman, Obinna Igbo, for alleged importation and sale of fake Amanta Forte, an unregistered anti-malarial drug.
In a statement by its media consultant, Sayo Akintola, the drug control agency revealed that Igbo claimed to have imported the fake drugs from India and sold them at Shop E200, Freedom Line, Onitsha Head Bridge Market, Anambra State.
The statement also noted that the accused was arraigned before a Federal High Court on four counts of “unlawful importation, possession, sale, and distribution of fake Amanta Forte soft gel (Artemether 80mg + Lumefantrine 480mg Capsules) drug at Head bridge market Onitsha, Anambra State.
“The Director-General of NAFDAC, Prof. Mojisola Adeyeye, in her submissions, disclosed that officials of the Investigation and Enforcement Directorate of the Agency received intelligence on the importation and sale of the fake anti-malaria drug and swung into action immediately.
“She confirmed that the operatives raided three pharmaceutical outlets at Head bridge market Onitsha, namely, Triphon Point Global limited, Emma Medicals Nigeria Limited, and Ekeh Mountain Global Ventures Limited.
She confirmed that the offending product was found in Triphon Point Global limited and was subsequently evacuated while the shop was placed on hold.”
The statement also quoted Adeyeye as saying that the operatives also visited Emma Medicals and Ekeh Mountain Global Ventures Limited. A thorough screening was conducted, but the offending product was not displayed on their shelves. Still, their sales records confirmed that they sold the product, the statement noted.
However, the NAFDAC boss confirmed that the three shops had been placed on hold. At the same time, their Managing Directors were invited for further interrogation.
She said the three suspects were interrogated independently and their statements extracted. They admitted that they sourced the product from Mr. Obinna Igbo, Managing Director, Blessed OJ Don Global Link, in the market.
“Prof. Adeyeye explained that efforts to arrest Mr. Igbo proved abortive. He was on the run, knowing that NAFDAC was trailing him. Still, the three suspects promised to assist the Agency in apprehending him if given the opportunity.
“She further disclosed that a tracking device was engaged in tracking him down in Onitsha, Anambra State, where he was eventually arrested and taken into custody by the Investigation and Enforcement officers of NAFDAC in Asaba before he was later transferred to the Lagos office.”
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