13 November 2012

Ghana: FDB Gets Tough on Unwholesome Herbal Products

Wa — THE UPPER West Regional Directorate of the Food and Drugs Board (FDB) has directed that advertisement on the airwaves regarding some herbal products must be stopped because a lot of these products are not registered with the board and cannot guarantee the safety of the consuming public.

The acting Upper West regional Director of the FDB, Mr. Mr. Gordon Akrugu has also cautioned manufactures of the herbal drugs against advertising such products on all local radio stations in the region.

The FDB director indicated that some of the manufacturers also claim to provide services using medical devices for medical diagnosis contrary to the true situation.

The St. Francis Herbal center, Rakson Herbal centre, Bahas Herbal centre and Dr. Heavens and Wongwaana Pharmacy were mentioned by Mr. Akrugu as some of the culprits.

Mr. Akrugu further said the acts contravene sections 3, 14 and 18 of the Food and Drugs law, PNDCL305B which states that "A person commits an offence if he or she, labels, packages, sells or advertises a food, drugs cosmetic, medical device or chemical substance in a manner that is false, misleading or deceptive as regards its character, nature, value, additives, substance, potency quality, composition, merit or safety".

He also referred to Section 15 on prohibited advertisement which states that "a person shall not advertise drugs (herbal), cosmetic, medical device, and a chemical substance to the general public as treatment, prevention or cure for a disease, disorder or an abnormal physical state specific in the provided schedule.

Section 18 of the registration of products, he further stated "A person shall not manufacture, prepare, sell, supply, export or import a food, drugs cosmetic, medical device, chemical substance unless the article has been registered with the board".

Mr. Akrugu appealed to consumers to report to the FDB their observations and exercise their ability to make a choice by refusing to purchase unwholesome food. Mr. Akrugu called on all stakeholders, as a matter of urgency, to come together to develop a safety risk-based approach by strengthening effective regulation in Ghana.

He warned the affected manufacturers to desist from associating FDB in advertising their products because they have not registered such herbals products with the FDB and advised them to regularize their products and adverts. The FDB director cautioned that those who failed to comply will be in contravention of PNDCL 305B section 9 or 26 and will attract the appropriate sanctions.

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