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National Agency for Food and Drug Administration and Control (NAFDAC)

Tomato Paste Warehouse Sealed, NAFDAC Arrests Suspect

A distribution warehouse of imported contraband tomato paste was sealed up on Thursday in Rivers State by the National Agency for Food, Drug Administration and Control (NAFDAC).

Adeniran Kazeem, the NAFDAC assistant chief regulatory officer, Apapa Lagos, made this known to journalists in Port Harcourt.

Mr. Kazeem said this after the arrest of Mr. Obiora John, the Managing Director of Integrated Wholesales Services Limited in Trans-Amadi Layout, who allegedly imported and distributed contraband tomato paste, which is in the federal government list of contraband importation products in the country.

Mr. Kazeem also said Obiora John allegedly removed the seal placed on his facility by the agency in November 2022.

“Upon our interrogation, we noticed that the company removed the agency seal placed at the facility in November 2022 without the agency’s approval. The company’s accountant told us that the company had stopped the importation and distribution of contraband tomato paste since 2020, but we found out that the imported tomato paste seen at the facility was manufactured in 2022.”

Read Also: Warehouse Containing Unregistered Food Products Uncovered By NAFDAC in Lagos

“We also found out from the company’s records that there have been importation and distribution of the products to date.”

The NAFDAC official said the agency’s aim of raiding and sealing contraband drinks and food distribution companies in the country was to promote, encourage and create an enabling environment for local manufacturers.

He advised the public to stop patronising the distributors of imported contraband products in the stores and open the market, revealing that the suspect had been arrested.

Obiora John, the managing director of Integrated Wholesales Services Limited at Trans-Amadi industrial layout, said the company was operating a sketchy business to hold their clients till the company starts production at the newly built production factory.

According to Mr. John, he removed the seal because he thought that he could remove the seal after payment to the agency.