Crime & Investigation

UPDF, NDA Team up to Battle “Unscrupulous” Drug Dealers

pharm geneva; font-size: small; line-height: 200%;”>To enable regulation and control of the drugs’ production, treat importation, distribution and use, UPDF and NDA have established strategic partnership to conduct awareness and sensitization campaigns on best drug practices among officers and men of UPDF their families and the public.

This collaboration with UPDF Directorate of Information is under the theme “Fostering Community Relations to Eliminate Unscrupulous Drug Operators.”

NDA Executive Secretary, Dr. Gordon K. Sematiko, said unscrupulous operators in the drug sub-sector present a countrywide public health crisis.

“They range from dealers inactive, useless preparations to harmful, toxic substances fleecing the public of health benefits. These operators sale of prescription drugs which are not permitted to be available in their outlets, sale of unregistered drugs, dispensing of drugs being carried out by untrained persons, poor record keeping on the types of drugs dispensed, dispensing expired drugs/counterfeits, unsuitable premises, unethical health professionals and poor drug storage. This has therefore put the health and lives of the population at risk and also contradicts the NDA goal of effectively protecting and promoting public heath for all the people in Uganda,” he noted.

“As NDA also celebrates 20 years of service in drug regulation appreciates the vigilance the public has exhibited in providing information on unscrupulous drug outlet operators as opposed in the past when the public would gang up with the culprits to lynch the NDA Drug Inspectors.”

Sematiko emphasised that NDA cannot stand alone if it is to deliver on its mandate, saying it requires collaboration with other stakeholders like the media, pharmaceutical manufacturers, health professionals councils, consumers, international agencies and other government enforcement agencies to enable it effectively protect the health of the population.

“NDA has contributed enormously to the health sector in the 20 years and it cannot relent its efforts to the forces of unscrupulous drug operators in the sub-sector,” he observed, adding, “The coming on board of the UPDF is because improper use of drugs is a very huge security concern and threat to the public. UPDF is also extending its security mandate which is very much welcome as it will further consolidate NDA’s work against the fight against unscrupulous drug outlet operators.”

Sematiko said this awareness will be done through a documentary developed on access, proper drug use and mitigating unscrupulous operators among the officers and men of UPDF and their families and the public through accessing good quality, safe and efficacious human and veterinary medicines in its areas of deployment.

The documentary will also be used to promote awareness among other relevant vulnerable communities e.g schools, hospitals and the public agreed upon by both parties.


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