NDA wants Power to Prosecute Drug Related Cases

1445 Views Kampala, Uganda
The National Drug Authority wants the power to prosecute and punish people who manufacture and trade in fake drugs. Apollo Muhairwe, the Executive Secretary of the National Drug Authority, said today that many people are arrested for trading in fake drugs, but that the Directorate of Public Prosecutions isn't doing enough to ensure that they are brought to book. He said many of those arrested are merely cautioned and freed. Muhairwe said the punitive measures do not act as a deterrent, but merely encourage the trade in fake drugs. He said the National Drug Authority has written to the Director of Public Prosecutions requesting for authority to prosecute under the National Drug Policy and Authority Act, but no reply has been received as yet. Muhairwe, who spoke to Uganda Radio Network outside the corridors of the National Health Assembly taking place in Kampala this week, said the National Drug Authority has tightened the inspection of drugs and major entry points into Uganda. He said imported drugs are quarantined at the entry points for several days to enable inspectors test the medicine samples for quality. Muhairwe said that although the National Drug Authority is successfully inspecting local pharmaceutical plants, the problem of fake drugs continues because of the unmanned border posts scattered all over the country. He said Government needs to increase its funding to the Authority to enable it to hire more staff for monitoring and quality control measures.