National Agency for Food and Drug Administration and Control (NAFDAC) have been instructed by the Federal Ministry of Health for further issuance of permits for the importation of codeine as active pharmaceutical ingredient for cough preparations.
Professor Isaac Adewole, the Minister of Health gave this directive in his office in Abuja on Tuesday, May 1, 2018.
The reason behind his order for the ban of the substance is because of the gross abuse codeine usage has been subjected to in the country, especially in Northern Nigeria.
In its stead, the minister said codeine containing cough syrups should be replaced with dextromethorphan which is less addictive.
He also directed the Pharmaceutical Council of Nigeria, (PCN) and NAFDAC to see to the recall for labelling and audit trailing of all codeine containing cough syrups in the country, while he has also banned sales of Codeine containing cough syrup without prescription across the country.
The PCN has been directed to continue enforcement activities on pharmacies, patent and proprietary medicine vendors’ shops and outlets throughout the country.
This ban is coming in the wake of the documentary on the abuse of Cough Syrup in some part of the country by a BBC journalist.