The Zamfara State Government has commenced the production of drugs to reduce cost and guard against use of fake drugs in the country.
Governor Bello Matawalle made this known on Wednesday, in Gusau during the presentation of four products produced on test run by the state’s Drugs Management and Medical Consumables Agency.
Mr Matawalle said the local production of drugs and medical consumables would soon take off in earnest in the state when the plant becomes operational.
“We have procured the machines needed for the take-off of the plant and we will ensure that drugs produced in Zamfara can compete favourably with drugs produced by larger companies.
“We will ensure that the people of Zamfara, Nigerians and indeed all our customers in the world get genuine and high-quality products from our production line.
“All health facilities in the state will be sure of regular supply of cheap and accessible basic drugs to treat our people, while we will continue to provide free healthcare services to women and under-five children,” the governor, who was represented at the event by the Permanent Secretary, state Ministry of Health, Dr Habibu Yelwa, said.
Earlier, the Executive Secretary of the Drugs Management and Medical Consumables Agency, Aliyu Maikiwo, said the agency had distributed some of the products to neighbouring states and that the response was commendable.
He said, “under test run of our products, we were able to produce high quality methylated spirit, hand sanitiser, liquid soap and room freshner, which have been boosted with antibiotics”.
Mr Maikiwo, who is a Pharmacist, said when the plant becomes operational the agency would be ready to present more drugs at the markets.
In their separate comments, the Medical Director of Yariman Bakura Specialist Hospital, Gusau, Dr Bello Kwatarkwashi, and the State Team Leader of the MNCH2, Dr Lawal Yusuf, urged the state government to ensure the early take off of the plant.
The two health experts also called on the state government to effectively fund the plant expressing confidence that it would grow to become one of the major sources of revenue to the state.
The News Agency of Nigeria, NAN, reports that all stakeholders in the health sector as well as students from the state College of Health Sciences and Technology, Tsafe, as well as the School of Nursing and Midwifery, Gusau, witnessed the event.