medical syringe syringes
Medical Syringe

Minister Seeks Total Ban on Medical Syringes Importation

The Minister of State for Health and Social Welfare, Dr Tunji Alausa, on Sunday, reiterated the call for a total ban on the importation of medical syringes to encourage local production and help grow the nation’s economy.

In a stated statement signed by the Resident Media Consultant of the National Agency for Food and Drug Administration and Control, Sayo Akintola, he made the call during a visit to the Afrimedical Manufacturing and Supplies Limited Syringe Factory in Ogun State.

The minister, who was accompanied by the Minister of Industry, Trade and Investment, Mrs Doris Uzo-Anite; the Director-General of NAFDAC, Prof Mojisola Adeyeye, the United Nations Deputy Secretary General, among others, reaffirmed the determination of the Federal Government to provide the necessary support to the local manufacturing sector to enhance its contribution to the Gross Domestic Product.

Alausa affirmed that the restructuring of syringe and needle production in Nigeria is meant to guarantee the availability of high-quality products manufactured by Nigerians in the market to generate lucrative employment opportunities.

The minister, however, implored NAFDAC to ensure that unbridled importation of syringes does not hamper the development of the local industry through unhealthy competition.

“Don’t give them any more authorisation to import. We need to protect the local industry through the backward integration model aimed at enhancing the local capacity,’’ he added.

The NAFDAC DG, Adeyeye reiterated the need for a holistic approach by relevant agencies of government to solve the problem of substandard falsified medical devices coming into the country through the ports.

According to her, the National Primary Healthcare Development Agency has also been directed to patronise local manufacturers of syringes to provide employment opportunities to Nigerians through the expansion of operations of the Nigeria manufacturing companies.

She said the NPHCDA was given the last import order in December 2023, adding, ”However, for the local manufacturers, we are doing hand-holding with our syringe companies. Hand-holding, meaning we are working with them by correcting whatever we find wrong or inappropriate in their operations.”

On his part, the chairman of Mikano International, the parent company of Afrimedical Manufacturing and Supplies Limited, Mr Mofid Karameh said they are poised to revolutionise the landscape with the aim to restore Nigeria’s position as the premier hub in Africa.

Meanwhile, the Managing Director of Afrimedical, Mr Akin Oyediran maintained that the company plans on manufacturing high-quality syringes, not only for Nigeria but also for neighbouring countries.