Following the arrival of the Madagascar herbal cure for COVID-19 in Nigeria on Saturday, the National Agency for Food and Drug Administration and Control has promised to fast-track the laboratory examination of the drug, named Covid Organics, The PUNCH reports.
The agency, which regulates and controls the manufacture, importation, exportation, distribution, advertisement, sale and use of food, drugs, cosmetics, medical devices, packaged water, chemicals and detergents, noted that the merchandise would be subjected to the traditional procedure but that the method would be fast-tracked.
President Muhammadu Buhari, had while receiving the samples of the merchandise , also referred to as CVO, from the visiting President of Guinea Bissau, Umaro Embalo, at the presidential villa noted that he would first “listen to science” before allowing the merchandise or any new medicines to be utilized in Nigeria.
The President told his guest that the relevant regulatory institutions within the country would wish to endorse the merchandise before it might be employed by Nigerians.
“We have our institutions, systems and processes within the country. Any such formulations should be sent to them for verification. i will be able to not put it to use without the endorsement of our institutions,” Buhari told Embalo.
Meanwhile, in an interview with haymaker on Saturday, NAFDAC’s Director of PR , Dr Abubakar Jimoh, who spoke on behalf of the agency’s director-general, Prof Mojisola Adeyeye, noted that the agency would prioritise the laboratory examination of the merchandise once it received it from the authorities.
He said, “When the drug arrives, it’ll attend the Minister of Health who will successively hand it over to NAFDAC through the PTF. it’s then we might start our laboratory examination. it’ll be subjected to the traditional procedure.
“We would expedite action on this because most are anxiously expecting the result. we might speed it up but it’ll still need to undergo the traditional laboratory analysis and medical evaluation.
“Unlike the orthodox medicine, with the herbal medicine, it’s given linctus status, it’s not given full registration which means it’s a lifetime of two years, unlike normal drug that features a lifetime of 5 years. So, this is often what is going to be applicable to the Madagascar drug. we might make sure that the claims being made are true.”
When asked how long it could deem the laboratory examination to be concluded, he said the traditional procedure was three months but that given things at hand, the method would be prioritised without compromising the efficiency of the method .
He said, “The normal mandatory procedure is three months, but under this emergency, we might provides it a top priority to return out with urgent results. within the process of the evaluation, if NAFDAC must get in-tuned with the manufacturers we’ll . It all depends on the analysis within the lab.
“This quite drug doesn’t undergo a clinical test at this stage; it’s only it wants to travel through registration that it’ll be subjected to clinical test . We are only getting to determine its safety and efficacy now.”
Embalo had during the visit said his main reason for visiting Buhari was to thank him and seek his fatherly counsel after the tussles that attended the overall elections in Guinea Bissau, which he won.
He disclosed his decide to form a government of national unity and follow within the footsteps of Buhari to start a war against corruption.
Embalo added that his new government inherited myriads of challenges and would require the “big brother” support of Nigeria to tug through, adding, “The problems of Guinea Bissau are problems of Nigeria. I even have come to you as your son.
“I need your help and assistance to form the people happy. i will be able to not allow you to down; neither will I put you in any difficult situation.”
Buhari, who commended Embalo on his victory and for having the ability to stabilise his country, noted that Nigeria decided to stay West Africa politically stable, promising to support the new government in Guinea Bissau.
He said, “I commend your political dexterity in getting the opposition to hitch the proposed unity government. i will be able to cooperate and help in every way possible.”
The Senior Special Assistant to the President on Media and Publicity, Mr Garba Shehu, said during a statement that Buhari seized the chance to praise the President of Niger Republic, Mahamadou Issoufou, for the “good work” he had wiped out the West African sub-region.
Issoufou is that the current Chairman of the Economic Community of West African States.
Following the criticisms that greeted the planned importation of the Madagascar drug into Nigeria, the Chairman of the Presidential Task Force on COVID-19 and Secretary to the govt of the Federation, Mr Boss Mustapha, said on Thursday that Nigeria didn’t request the herbal medicine from Madagascar.
He explained it had been a gesture from Madagascar to all or any African countries, including Nigeria. He noted that the quantities meant for every African country were airlifted to Guinea Bissau from where respective African countries would airlift theirs.
Mustapha stressed that the President had given a transparent instruction that he should subject the merchandise to an equivalent validation process any internally manufactured product would be taken through which he should make arrangements to “freight it home.”
Meanwhile, the President of Guinea Bissau personally delivered the products to Nigeria on Saturday.
The Regional Director of World Health Organisation office in Africa, Matshidiso Moeti, said at a media briefing on Thursday that the WHO was “in touch with the govt of Madagascar.”
There is an ongoing look for a vaccine for the raging virus, which has infected 4,706,088 persons across the planet , out of which 311,899 persons have died while 1,802,555 persons have recovered.