UPDATE: We Sealed PINNACLE Due to Refusal to Turn Up for Investigation – NAFDAC

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The National Agency for Food and Drug Administration Control, NAFDAC has said that it sealed a popular wholesale supermarket in Dugbe area of Ibadan, PINNACLE Supermarket, to enforce compliance to the summon by its Directorate of investigation and enforcement from Lagos.

NAFDAC Coordinating Director for the six geo political zones in Nigeria, and Director Southwest Zone, Mrs Roseline Ajayi who made the call while interacting with our correspondent, explained that imported products without NAFDAC approval were recently mopped up at the supermarket during a visit by the enforcement team.

Mrs. Ajayi said the exercise was as a result of reports from whistle blowers in which the management of PINNACLE was later summoned to Lagos for investigation but failed to show up since January 2024 until the facility was sealed on 2nd April, 2024.

“The Directorate of Investigation and Enforcement came to Ibadan based on whistle blowers to some supermarkets. They found a particular product in pinnacle, when we see products suspected to be fake or on parallel importation, some of them may not even be fake but on parallel importation. The Parallel importation means that there’s an importation of product through unmanned boarder, a version that is not registered in Nigeria.

The team mopped the products from the supermarket and invited them to Lagos, so for whatever reason I cannot say, between January and March , they didn’t honour that invitation and so we were notified that these people have been invited and they didn’t come, so we from Ibadan had to go and ensure the facility was locked. You know in Nigeria, unless you lock them , they will not comply. And I think by now, they would have showed up in Lagos.” Ajayi explained

Mrs Ajayi noted that the mandate of NAFDAC is to regulate and control the importation, production, distribution, sales and use of all regulated products, adding that NAFDAC regulated products: foods, drugs, medical devices, chemicals, detergents, cosmetics, and packaged water and if exported, it must go through the agency’s regulation to ensure that quality products are made available to the citizens of the country.

“We undertake registration and before we do registration, the premises where these products are made are inspected , these products are sampled to the laboratory to verify the contents and the claims before they are given NAFDAC registration. So NAFDAC registration is like a pronouncement of the quality, the safety and the wholesomeness of whatever that product is. It’s an authentication by NAFDAC that the product is safe and not injurious to health of the consumers.”

Supermarkets engage in both local and imported products but if any product does not have NAFDAC registration, it means that it has not gone through the regulation of the agency to the extent that we can make pronouncement on that product, if it doesn’t have NAFDAC registration number , it means we are not aware of the production, facility, we’ve not taken it to the lab to verify the claims and the content and that we have not reviewed the documents to give it a certification.”

“For those that are imported, they are mandated to register and we go oversea to the country of origin to inspect the facilities, we don’t want Nigeria to be a dumping ground and we don’t want a situation where we are regulating only local producers . Those that are importing we also visit their facilities of manufacture in abroad to be sure that they have standard facilities , we sample to the lab as well, we review their documents and then issue certification or registration number.”

The NAFDAC Boss , called on supermarkets and stores not to get products from importers not certified by the agency to stamp out parallel importation of products into the country.

While stating that parallel importation was prohibited, the NAFDAC Boss enjoined supermarkets and stores who deal in imported products to buy from authorised importers or obtain the licence for global listing for supermarkets items to enable them import branded items in large quantities into Nigeria.

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