Mojisola Adeyeye, director-general of the National Agency for Food and Drug Administration and Control (NAFDAC), says Nigeria is at risk of the outbreak of COVID-19 better known as coronavirus.
At a press conference in Abuja on Monday, she said drug insecurity exposes the country to danger, lamenting the effect of a country importing most of its pharmaceutical products.
Nigeria imports at least 70 percent of its drugs annually from China and India. Such imports reportedly gulped $402.8 million in 2018.
Speaking at the briefing on the upcoming African Medicine Quality Forum (AMQF) meeting in Abuja, Adeyeye said Nigeria should “start praying” because it is exposed to great risk following the outbreak in China.
“Seventy percent of our drugs are imported and the alarm I am sounding now is one everybody should take seriously. We have drug insecurity because of the coronavirus,” NAN quoted her as saying.
“India is already feeling it because they buy most of their materials and active ingredients from China. If India is feeling it, we should start praying because we don’t manufacture anything here except water. We import almost everything – active and non-active ingredients, equipment etc.
“So it is a scary thing, and I have been emphasizing this from day one; we need drug security. Since we import 70 percent of our drugs, then, we are in trouble if such things happen.”
As of Sunday, the death toll from the coronavirus outbreak in mainland China reached 1,770, with more than 70,500 cases reported.
Last week, the federal government opened three centers where the disease can be tested in the country.