By Felicia Imohimi
The Federal Government may withdraw approval given to the City Pharmaceutical and Allied Partners (CPAPL) over lack of commitment to its pharmaceutical project in Lagos State.
Dr Elijah Mohammed, Registrar of the Pharmacists Council of Nigeria (PCN), gave the hint in an interview with the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) on Friday in Abuja.
Mohammed said that CPAPL was given approval as promoters of the Coordinated Wholesale Centre (CWC) of Federal Government’s pharmaceutical project in Lagos State.
He explained that the company was the purpose-built vehicle to actualise the CWC project in the state.
“The withdrawal of approval is not unconnected with the lack of commitment to the project by the company.
“CPAPL has enjoyed several interventions from the Federal Government, through several concessions, requests to the Lagos state government and the traditional institution in the state on their behalf and still failed to be committed to the project.
“It is very disheartening that the leadership of CPAPL in Lagos is bent on frustrating the efforts geared toward actualising the CWC project in Lagos state.
“It is, therefore, appropriate to strongly warn that the government may be forced to withdraw the approval given to CPAPL.
“The government will as well take further necessary actions to protect citizens from the effects of illicit activities of merchants in the drug distribution system in the country,’’ Mohammed said.
The registrar listed interventions initiated by the Federal Government to Lagos state and its traditional institutions to include, visit of the immediate past Minister of Health to the state in 2017.
The intervention according to him was to eliminate encumbrances previously associated with the project to ensure early completion and commission of the CWC project in Lagos.
“The minister was accompanied by the PCN Registrar and representative of NAFDAC.
“That visit yielded a positive outcome that led to the issuance of Certificate of Occupancy (CoO) for the site of the project and subsequent approvals for construction on the site.
“It has become apparent that the driver of the project (CPAPL) has taken these supports with levity.’’
Mohammed told NAN that what this means was that the operation of the open drug market in Lagos would continue to exist.
This, in all ramifications, is against the tenet of the National Drug Policy and the National Drug Distribution Guidelines, he added.
“This is rightly so because such facilities (the open drug market) are centres for various illicit activities that endanger the health of citizens.
“The government will, therefore, not fail in its responsibility to close the market to achieve sanity in the drug distribution system in the country,’’ the registrar said. (NAN)