NIGERIA: NAFDAC tells court how citizen lost 14-month-old son

CourtAN employee with National Agency for Food Drugs, Administration and Control, NAFDAC, Mrs Titilope Ogunrohunmu, yesterday, told a Federal High Court sitting in Lagos, that one Mr. Chidi Njoku reported to the agency that his 14 months old son died after taking “my pikin” teething mixture.

The witness told the court that in November 2008, the said Mr Njoku brought to NAFDAC, as evidence, the remainder of the teething substance which he had administered on his late child, which allegedly led to the boy’s death.

Ogunrohumun gave evidence at the resumed hearing in the trial of Barewa Pharmaceutical Company Ltd and two others, Ebele Eromosele and Adeyemo Abiodun, who are facing a six-count charge of production of an alleged killer teething mixture, “my pikin, which allegedly claimed the lives of no fewer than 80 children in 2008 in the country.

The witness said based on the report received from the complainant, an inspection was conducted at the factory of Barewa Company, where about three batches of drug samples were collected and taken to NAFDAC laboratory for test.

Being cross-examined on the evaluation of the results from the laboratory test, Ogunrohumun, said her duty did not extend to obtaining such results, but only inspection.

According to her, after the samples were collected, they were sent to NAFDAC laboratory for test, and whatever result discovered, was communicated to her supervisor, as it was not within her jurisdiction to pursue lab results.

Further trial was adjourned till February 26.

The accused persons were re-arraigned in January 7, after the charge was amended because of the death of founder of the company, Mr Kola Gbadegeshin, which prompted the court to strike out his name from the charge.

The offence, allegedly committed by the accused persons, contravened Section 1 (a) of  the Counterfeit and Fake Drugs and Unwholesome Processed Foods (Miscellaneous provisions) Act No. 25 of 1999 and punishable under Section 3 of the same Act.

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