PCN To Prosecute Illegal Drug Dealers In Enugu

NAFDAC, Drug MonitoringPharmacist Council of Nigeria says its working with relevant agencies and organs of government to prosecute arrested patent medicine dealers who broke its seal during its last enforcement exercise in Enugu State.

PCN had in April 2017 sealed off 264 illegal pharmacies and medicine stores for falling short of operations standards

The organisation’s Deputy Director enforcement, Stephen Esumobi said some of the premises do not have the right facilities in place to handle the categories of medicine stock.

“The owner of this premises was arrested because he was operating illegally and he refused to update his facilities to ensure that the storage of the drugs is in line with manufacturers specifications – Most of the drugs have not met minimum requirements for safety, quality and efficacy because of poor handling. Some of these drugs when they are not properly handled, could endanger public health”

“The owner broke the seal and continued operation as at before. Pharmacists Council of Nigeria is not going to allow that. We are going to ensure that those who broke our seal in Enugu state are arrested and prosecuted”

He also noted that the agency is committed to riding the nation of illegal drugs and promoting health.

Buhari To Attend 3rd Dakar International Forum On Peace And Security In Africa

Buhari To Attend 3rd Dakar International Forum On Peace And Security In AfricaPresident Muhammadu Buhari will attend the Third Dakar International Forum on Peace and Security in Africa in Dakar, Senegal, from December 5-6, 2016.

The President’s Spokesperson, Mr Femi Adesina, disclosed this in a statement on Sunday.

President Buhari however had a closed-door meeting with the President of Liberia, Mrs Hellen Johnson Sirleaf at the Presidential Villa in Abuja.

Both leaders began the private discussion shortly after President Sirleaf arrived in the nation’s capital earlier on Monday.

After the meeting, President Buhari is expected to leave Abuja to attend the peace forum which is being convened by President Macky Sall of Senegal, with support from the African Union to discuss security-related challenges on the continent.

It will be attended by African leaders and representatives of regional and international organisations.

President Buhari is scheduled to participate in the Panel of Heads of State on Tuesday, December 6.

The President, who has identified improved security in Nigeria as a priority for development, shares the vision of the forum in finding lasting solutions to security challenges on the continent, notably terrorism and violent extremism, piracy, drugs, child and human trafficking.

In Dakar, the Nigerian leader will use the occasion of his participation in the forum to continue his active engagement with political authorities on the need for enhanced security cooperation in the region.

The theme of the two-day Forum is, “Africa and its Security Challenges: Perspectives for Effective Solutions’’.

Navy Offers Free Health Services To Community In Cross River

Navy, Ugep, Cross RiverThe Nigerian Navy has offered a free medical service to residents of Ugep community of Yakurr Local Government Area in Cross River State.

As part of activities to mark its 50th Anniversary, the Nigerian Navy said the gesture was also part of its social responsibility to the public, especially the vulnerable who cannot afford medical services.

The Medical team was led by Commodore Tanko Pani who represented the Flag Officer Commanding of Eastern Naval Command, Rear Admiral James Oluwole.

Commodore Pani said attaining the Golden Jubilee was a great feat to the command and giving back to the society was a great way of marking the milestone.

He urged the community to embrace the gesture while promising that the Navy would not relent in its commitment to safeguarding Nigeria’s waterways.

In his remarks, the Commander of the Nigerian Navy Reference Hospital in Calabar, Surgeon Rear Admiral Abubakar Yusuf, described the medical rhapsody as a means of promoting good health among communities.

While some of the beneficiaries, who were at least 50,000 commended the initiative, the Paramount Ruler of Ugep, Obol Opon Offem Ubana, also expressed gratitude to the Navy for choosing his community for the exercise.

The healthcare services rendered include eye screening, distribution of eye glasses as well as referral for surgery if need be.

Other free services were blood pressure checks, diabetes screening, malaria treatment, de-worming, distribution of insecticide treated mosquito nets, drugs, and a health talk.

Insurgency Victims Get 15 Million Naira Support From Yobe Govt.

yobeThe Yobe State Government has under the Victims Support Funds (VSF), committed 15 million Naira to the procurement of health equipment, drugs and food for insurgency victims in the security threatened north-east state.

The Chief Medical Director (CMD) of the Sani Abacha Hospital in Damaturu, Yobe State capital, Dr. Garba Fika, revealed this on Monday while displaying the items procured and ready to be put to use across hospitals in the state.

The CMD said that the 15 million Naira was given to the hospital by the Presidential Committee on Insurgency Victims Support Fund and the money has been effectively put to use, to improve the health conditions of people in the state and beyond.

Dr. Fika said that the insurgency triggered influx of people in the state, thereby over stretching the health facilities in the state.

The CMD appreciated the efforts of the state and the Federal government, as well as donor agencies for their various contributions in supporting the state’s health sector.

Dr. Fika recalled that the Presidential Committee on Insurgency, under the VSF, had in August 2015 pledged the sum of 20 million Naira. He said the committee has so far released 15 million naira, with the assurance to pay the balance, pending further assessment of what the hospital has done with the 15 million Naira.

He revealed that the sum of 8 million Naira was committed to equipment, while the remaining 7 million Naira was used in the procurement of food and drugs, as well as maintenance of vehicles.

The CMD, who displayed both the equipment and items procured, said that the more the insurgency victims are well taken care of, the less the health complications. He gave the assurance that the hospital would continue to do its best in uplifting the health status of the people.

The Secretary of the State Hospital Management Board, Aliyu S. Fada, also gave the assurance that the procured equipment would go a long way in improving the over stretched health facilities in the state. He called on other donor agencies to play their parts in assisting the insurgency victims.

Items procured include multi-purpose suction machine, adjustable wheel chairs, stethoscopes, different oxygen cylinders, digital thermometers and oxygen concentrator.

Others include; arm cuff, inflammation bag and bulb, calibration glass tubes, mercury, foetal doppler, compressor nebulizers, glucometers (accu check), among several others.

Whitney Houston’s Daughter, Bobbi Kristina Brown, Dies At 22

Bobbi KristinaBobbi Kristina Brown, the only child of late singer Whitney Houston, died on Sunday at the age of 22, some six months after suffering irreversible brain damage in an incident at her suburban Atlanta home, her family said in a statement.

Brown, whose father is R&B singer Bobby Brown, was found face down and unresponsive in a bathtub in her home by her partner and a friend on January 31. She was moved by her family to hospice care on June 24.

“She is finally at peace in the arms of God,” her family said. “We want to again thank everyone for their tremendous amount of love and support during these last few months.”

As news of her death became public, media crews and some fans gathered on a darkened cul de sac in the Atlanta suburb of Duluth, where ornate street lamps illuminated the ivy-covered brick nursing home where Brown died.

“We just wanted to show our respect,” said Ali Joyner, 15, who persuaded her mum and a neighbour to drive the 20 miles from their home in Dacula, Ga. “I just loved her mum, Whitney. And Bobbi is part of that.”

Her death came three years after her Grammy-winning mother, who had battled substance abuse, drowned in a bathtub in a Beverly Hills hotel at age 48. Authorities said cocaine abuse and heart disease contributed to Houston’s February 11, 2012 death.

Bobbi Kristina Brown inherited her mother’s fortune.

A $10 million civil lawsuit filed last month accuses Bobbi Kristina Brown’s partner, Nick Gordon, of causing her life-threatening injuries and of stealing from her bank account while she was in a coma. No one has been charged in the case.

Bobbi Kristina Brown was an aspiring singer who began performing with her mother as early as 1999, singing duets of “My Love is Your Love.” In 2003 they recorded another duet of “Little Drummer Boy” for a holiday album.

Her father is a Grammy Award winner who started his career as frontman for the R&B group New Edition.

Houston and Bobby Brown both struggled with substance abuse and divorced when their daughter was 14. Houston described their 15-year marriage, which ended in 2007, as drug- and alcohol-fueled.

The couple’s tempestuous relationship and often erratic behavior was chronicled in the short-lived television series, “Being Bobby Brown.”

Bobbi Kristina Brown was hospitalized twice with anxiety after her mother’s death.

In 2012 she starred on Lifetime’s reality TV show, “The Houstons: On Our Own,” in which Houston’s family struggled to recover from the famous singer’s death. The same year Bobbi Kristina Brown guest-starred on “For Better or Worse,” a television series about a married couple.

Senate Committee Investigates Cecilia Ibru’s Siezed Assets

senateThe Senate has begun investigating an allegation made by stakeholders that the Asset Management Company of Nigeria (AMCON) failed to remit funds and assets of former Managing Director of the Defunct Oceanic Bank, Mrs Cecilia Ibru to shareholders, as well as Eco Bank, the company that took over Oceanic Bank

At an investigative hearing organized by the Senate Committee on Drugs, Narcotics and Financial Crimes, the committee observed that four years after entering into a plea bargain with the office of the Attorney General of the Federation, Mrs Cecilia Ibru is yet to remit N16.1 million to AMCON.

However, the Acting Managing Director of AMCON, Mrs Foluke Dosunmu said AMCON had not taken up Mrs Ibru over the N16.1 billion, because it had not ascertained her unwillingness to pay it, saying once it is confirmed that she’s not ready to pay, the corporation would take her back to court.

The Acting MD Also maintained that AMCON does not owe the Oceanic or Eco Bank.

The Senate Committee also faulted AMCON over its failure to follow due procedures in the sales of some recovered properties, as they revealed how the corporation had failed to advertise the property before embarking on sales as required by the rules governing sales of government property.

The Senate Committee, headed by Senator Victor Lar had entertained a petition said to have been filed by a Nigerian whose name was not disclosed, said that the sale of the properties by (AMCON) were questionable.

The seized assets, worth N569 billion, were taken over by the Federal Government, following a plea bargain entered into by Mrs Ibru. The committee said that the mode of disposal of the assets located within and outside Nigeria was shrouded in secrecy.

Senator Victor Lar said on Monday that Ibru had pleaded guilty, during the course of her prosecution and entered into a plea bargain with the government, while handing over assets allegedly bought with depositor’s funds.

Bobbi Kristina Brown Is ‘Not Brain Dead?

bobbi kristinaFamily members of Bobbi Kristina Brown have been visiting her bedside since she was hospitalised on Saturday after being found unconscious in her bathtub, at her home in Atlanta.

Whitney Houston’s only child is now at Emory University Hospital and is still fighting for her life, as a family statement said on Monday.

Nothing has changed, despite reports that are popping up and painting a more serious picture.

According to reports, It’s now a matter of when the family wants to let go and accept that she’s pretty much not going to make it. They’ve left it up to the family as to how long they want to keep her alive.

Meanwhile other reports say a doctor told Brown’s family on Wednesday that nothing more could be done. “Everyone is coming to the hospital to say goodbye,” said a family member.

Bobby Brown issued a statement late Thursday denying these reports.

“If we issued a statement every time the media published a false report regarding this matter, that’s all we would be doing 24 hours a day. This is false, just as is the vast majority of the other reporting that is currently taking place,” he said.

A source close to the family said that it was wrong to say the family was gathering to say goodbye. “Because the family has been there since the beginning, so nothing is any different today for them.”

Also, Brown is “not brain dead,” as has been reported.

“And, as for other stories saying that the Houston family is feuding with Bobbi Kristina’s dad, bobby brown? Those aren’t true either. They “are not fighting,” some news reporters stated.

NAFDAC Destroys Illicit Drugs Worth N50 Million In Kaduna

nafdacThe National Agency for Food, Drug Administration and Control (NAFDAC) has reiterated its commitment to ridding Nigeria of counterfeit and unwholesome drugs towards  ensuring  the protection of lives of the citizens.

This resolve was re-echoed on Tuesday by the agency, as it destroyed expired pharmaceutical products worth 50 Million Naira in Kaduna State, north-west Nigeria.

The Director General of NAFDAC, Dr Paul Orhii restated that there would be no sacred cows in the fight against counterfeit drugs and substandard food  products.

Speaking after  setting the contraband products ablaze, Dr Orhii who was represented by the director, Special Duties in the agency, Abubakar Jimoh, said the agency was fully prepared to restore  sanity in the health sector and maintain zero tolerance in the fight against counterfeit drugs in Nigeria.

Though the various strategies employed by NAFDAC have resulted in seizures of smuggled containers of fake, substandard cosmetics and food products at the borders, Nigerians have also been advised to remain alert, to stop patronising street hawkers, whom they call merchants of death and to always check the labels of all consumables, which, when expired, can destroy the human organs.

According to the agency, statistics of counterfeit drugs have reduced from over 40 per cent in 2005 to 6.4 per cent in 2012, a feat that was achieved through collaboration with sister security agencies and the general public.

The agency also stated that it was making arrangements to regulate the manufacturing of orthodox medicines  to ensure that they do not constitute a threat to the health of Nigerians.

The Kaduna State commandant of National Drug Law Enforcement Agency, appealed to Nigerians to join hands with the agency towards ridding the country of counterfeit and expired drugs, adding that his agency will continue to collaborate with NAFDAC and other security agencies in the fight against fake drugs in the country.

EU, UNODC, NDLEA Seek Regional Cooperation Against Narcotics

NDLEA_NewThe European Union (EU) and United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC) are working with the Nigerian government to improve regional and international cooperation in drug control in order to strengthen regional and international cooperation in the fight against narcotic drugs.

This was made known during the visit of the EU Ambassador, Michel Arrion and country representative of UNODC, Ms. Mariam Sissoko to the NDLEA Headquarters in Lagos.

The EU Ambassador stressed the need to curtail the activities of drug syndicates through collaboration, adding that EU is providing funds for Project NGAV 16 – Response To Drugs and Related Organised Crime.

“At inter-continental level, the European Union finances a number of projects as part of the Cocaine Route Programme. The Cocaine Route programme with a budget of over 30 million Euros, covers 36 countries of which half are in Africa, essentially West-Africa, five in the Caribbean countries and the remaining in Latin and Central America” Arrion stated.

UNODC Country representative, Sissoko said that her office is working with the NDLEA to tackle the drug menace.

“We are working with the NDLEA to assist the Agency progress towards an intelligence-led organization equipped to deal with the challenges of the ever changing drug industry. We commend the Chairman and senior management of the NDLEA for decisively embarking on the change management process that is required to strengthen the intelligence-based response of NDLEA to drug matters”, she said.

NDLEA Chairman/Chief Executive, Ahmadu Giade, who received the delegation said that regional and international cooperation is vital to global success in narcotic control.
He also noted that “drug trafficking like terrorism and arms smuggling represents a growing threat to global peace and security. Many lives are being lost on a daily basis around the world. Activities of drug cartels have turned the world into a global village thus making international partnership amongst drug law officers, donors and international institutions inevitable.

“This project demonstrates EU’s willingness to assist countries in the implementation of international drug conventions. It will also provide appropriate framework for regional drug control programmes. The challenges posed by illicit drug cultivation, trafficking and abuse are enormous. We therefore believe that through shared responsibility, greater progress will be made in addressing the illicit drug phenomenon”.

Giade said the project will enhance technical and operational capacity in front line Agencies leading to targeted interventions on drugs and organized related crimes in Nigeria and the West African sub-region, adding that “it will help to manage drug abuse counseling, drug treatment and rehabilitation through the creation of a reliable network of quality drug treatment service providers”.

He also noted that the National Drug Control Master Plan (NDCMP) 2015-2019, a policy document for drug control is almost finalized. The master plan contains new ideas and new control approaches which will be implemented in the next four years.

The EU has procured 100 desktop computers for the smooth takeoff of a Data Exchange Centre, which will help to establish an evidence based approach in addressing the challenges of illicit drugs in the country.

Under the project an institutional assessment of the Agency was conducted which recommended capacity building and improved funding as the way forward for the Agency.

NDLEA Arrests, Prosecutes 348 Drug Suspects In Kaduna

The Kaduna State  Commander of the National Drug Law and Enforcement Agency (NDLEA), Mohammed Jibrin,  0n Wednesday said that the agency arrested 384 drug suspects and seized 2, 437. 60 kilograms of various illicit drugs in 2013.

He was speaking to reporters in Kaduna, where he gave the breakdown of the suspects as 371 males and 13 females.

He said Cannabis Sativa, also known as Marijuana, topped the list of seizures put at about 2.368 tons, adding that the 2013 numbers indicate a marked increase in the rate of arrests and seizures by the command.

The Commander also announced the discovery and sealing off of a fake Pharmaceutical company located in Zaria and another discovery and destruction of five Cannabis farms in five local government areas of the state.

Mr Jibrin also announced the arrest of eight drug barons and the conviction of 72 drug dealers to various jail terms by the Federal High Court in the state.

The commander, who decried the high rate of drug abuse among the youths in the state, however, vowed that the agency would not rest until it had eradicated such unwholesome practice across the state.

“The agency successfully rehabilitated 33 drug addicts and another 20 are undergoing the same process in their facility in Zaria,”  he said.

NYC Comptroller Candidate Arrested For Illegal Drug Sales

A former Manhattan madam who is running for New York City comptroller was arrested and charged with selling prescription pills for cash, the FBI said on Tuesday.

In the latest twist to the city’s scandal-hit campaign season, Kristin Davis, 38, allegedly sold prescription pills to a federal informant four times in four months this year, the FBI said.

Davis is running for the post of comptroller – in effect the city’s chief financial officer – also being sought by former Democratic New York Governor Eliot Spitzer.

Spitzer is attempting a political comeback after resigning as governor in 2008 amid a prostitution scandal. Davis has said Spitzer was one of her customers and that she provided him with prostitutes.

Polls show Spitzer tied with Manhattan Borough President Scott Stringer in the Democratic primary, set for September 10.

Davis is charged with four counts of distributing and possessing with intent to distribute a controlled substance. Each count carries a maximum sentence of 20 years in prison, said George Venizelos, head of the FBI’s New York office.

Following a federal court appearance on Tuesday afternoon, Davis was released on a $100,000 bond and ordered to surrender her passport and restrict her travel.

In court, she sat hunched over at the defense table, her hair in a ponytail, wearing a black sweater and slacks.

Her attorney Daniel Hochheiser said if Davis is indicted she will plead not guilty.

“Miss Davis is accused in a hearsay complaint based upon an unsworn statement of an admitted drug dealer seeking leniency at the expense of a high-profile target,” he said following the bail hearing.

Davis spent four months in jail for her role in the prostitution scandal. Spitzer, 54, was never charged with any crimes.

Leaving the courthouse, Davis walked through a throng of reporters and cameras, declining to answer questions about how the charges could affect her candidacy, and hailed a taxi cab.

A Libertarian, she entered the race before Spitzer announced his candidacy.

Spitzer is not the only New York politician attempting this year to recover from scandal.

Anthony Weiner, who resigned from Congress in 2011 after saying he had accidentally sent a lewd picture of himself over Twitter, in May launched a campaign for mayor.

Last week he publicly defied calls by major newspapers to drop out after a website published racy text messages he sent subsequent to the earlier scandal.

Designer Drugs Take Over Heroine, Marijuana -Report

A report by the United Nations on drugs has shown a sharp increase in the use of prescription drugs and so-called “designer drugs” posing threats to public health.

The report also said that there has been a decline in the use of traditional drugs such as heroin and cocaine in some parts of the world and even some stability in the use of marijuana in Nigeria but the abuse of chemical substances and prescription drugs persists.

The chairman of the National Drug Law Enforcement Agency (NDLEA), Ahmadu Giade says the incursion of foreign drug cartels into the country is also a bigger challenge.

The 2013 World Drug Report of the United Nations office on drugs and crime has shown an overall global stability in the abuse of drugs though some increase in the total number of users.

But more worrisome is the use of New Psychoactive Substances (NPS) also referred to as designer drugs besides the more popular cocaine and heroin. These drugs, which have street names such as “spice,” “meow-meow” and “bath salts,” are sold openly and online.

The report further stated that cannabis or marijuana remains the major substance of abuse but the designer drugs are catching up with the discovery of five clandestine laboratories used for the illicit production of methamphetamine within the past two years.

The report also points that sub-Sahara Africa will remain a porous transit routes for drug trafficking without clear strategies to stop the trend.