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House of Reps. calls for more investment in local drug production

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The House of Representatives has urged the Federal Government to invest more in the National Institute for Pharmaceutical Research and Development to encourage local drug production.

This was sequel to an unanimous adoption of a motion by Denis Idahosa (PDP-Edo) at the plenary on Tuesday.

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Moving the motion earlier, Idahosa said that Nigeria was largely dependent on China, among other countries for importation of active and non-active ingredients for the production of drugs.

He said that China had recently been inflicted with a Corona-virus that paralysed its economy, thus rendering it unable to produce or export those necessary ingredients or medicine.

Idahosa recalled that the Director-General of National Agency for Food and Administration Drug (NAFDAC) had earlier raised the alarm that the outbreak of Corona-virus in China had the capacity to result in an up-rise of drug insecurity in Nigeria.

He said that one of Nigeria’s National Drug Policy target was to increase local production capacity to a level where 70 per cent of total output satisfied at least 60 per cent of national drug requirements of essential drugs while the balance was exported by 2008.

“It is a fact that Nigeria does not produce drugs locally or the ingredients to make the drugs on a large commercial scale, and that Nigeria import over 70 per cent of the drugs majorly from China.

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“Even when Coronavirus is eradicated in future, Nigeria should continue to take the bold step in encouraging made in Nigeria drugs especially as part of its policy to encourage more locally made drugs,” he said.

The House mandated the Committees on Health Institutions, Health Care Services and Science and Technology to organise a round table to chart a probable course for the development of locally made drugs.

The Deputy Speaker of the House, Rep. Ahmed Wase (APC-Plateau) mandated the Committee on Legislative Compliance to ensure compliance.

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