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NAFDAC, CSO Reject Pesticide Control Bill

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.As Reps call for stronger regulation of food and drugs in Nigeria.

 

JONAS EZIEKE, Abuja

 

The National Agency for Food and Drugs Administration and Control NAFDAC and a Civil Society Organization CSO Alliance for Action Against Pesticide in Nigeria AAAPN have vehemently kicked against the passage into law of the Pesticide Control Bill by the National Assembly.

 

This happened as AAAPN has called on the federal and state governments in Nigeria to declare the prevalence of pesticides in the country as a national health emergency.

 

The two health institutions spoke at a two-day public hearing organised by the House of Representatives Committee on Agricultural Institutions and Productions on five agricultural reform bills.

 

Some of the proposed legislations are: A Bill for an Act to Amend the Nigerian Institute of Animal Science Act CAP N160 LFN 2004 and for Related Matters and  A Bill for an Act to Establish Communal Farms in All 774 Local Government Areas of the Federation to Develop A Suitable Agro-Allied Business in Nigeria And for Related Matters.

 

Others are A Bill for An Act to Provide for the Establishment of Nigeria Pesticide Council And for Related Matters, A Bill for an Act to Provide a Legal Framework for the Establishment of National Roots and Tubers Production Processing and Research Institute Zing, Taraba State And for Related Matters and A Bill for an Act to Amend the National Crop Varieties and Livestock Breads (Registration ETC) CAP N127 LFN 2004 and for Related Matters.

 

Raising a strong objection to the passage of the third bill, the NAFDAC DG Prof.Mojisola Adeyeye represented by the Director of the FCT of the agency Mrs Clementina Anyakorah said that the establishment of the Pesticide Control Council will lead to over-regulation and multiplicity of government agencies

 

She said that instead of creating a council that will be having an overlapping function with the NAFDAC, the Pesticide Control Council Bill should be withdrawn by the House.

 

Similarly, the National President of AAAPN Prof.Simon Irtwase said that the establishment of a Pesticide Control Council is uncalled for, rather the existing regulatory agencies should well funded and strengthened to perform their roles.

 

He informed the House Committee that many diseases are contracted by Nigerian from uncertified fruits that are sold in the nation’s open markets hence the need for food and drugs regulations by the authorities.

 

The House Committee Chairman Hon.Dandutse M. Mohammed and other invited stakeholders also harped on the need for a strong regulation of the food and drug sector by relevant government agencies in the country.

 

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