By Michael-Jude Nwolisa
The Editor-in-Chief of Fides Newspapers, Hon. Jude Atupulazi, has been honoured as a Patron by the Nigerian Association of Patent and Proprietary Medicine Dealers, NAPPMED, Njikoka Unit, during their 45th Year Anniversary Celebration at the Civic Centre, Enugwu-Ukwu, September 5.
The event which was aimed at celebrating the 45 years of the emergence of NAPPMED, Njikoka Unit, from NAPPMED, Old Awka Division, on March 20, 1974, was also a forum to induct and install different Patrons and Giants of NAPPMED.
Receiving his award as Patron, the visibly delighted Fides Editor-in-Chief, Hon. Jude Atupulazi, while expressing his joy, thanked the Association for such a great honour and recognition. He pledged to support every good cause of NAPPMED, even as he also promised to partner with them in terms of media and publicity.
Describing patent medicine dealers as important gate keepers who determined whether people lived or died, depending on what they sold to the public, Atupulazi charged them to ensure that they only sold genuine drugs. He regretted a situation where unsuspecting members of the public bought drugs which killed them rather than healing them and described those behind fake drugs as murderers.
Atupulazi urged the NAPPMED members to use their association to check the proliferation of fake drugs and warned that he would not hesitate to expose the association if he discovered they were part of the rot in the drugs industry, despite being one of their patrons.
He however commended the association for coming together to form a union with a view to working in concert to address the ills of their business.
Earlier, the Pastor in charge of St. Michael’s Anglican Church, Abagana, Rev. C. C. Obijiofor, in his words of exhortation, thanked God for the immeasurable growth which NAPPMED, Njikoka Unit, had experienced and prayed for more blessings on them. Rev. Obijiofor urged the Association to eschew all forms of malpractices and crooked medical deals or sale of expired drugs and reminded them that they were instruments in the hands of God and thus should use their profession to serve God and humanity.
In his opening remark, the Chairman of the occasion, Chief Peter Oriji, appreciated the members for coming out en masse for the celebration. Chief Oriji called for a higher level of integrity in the association and advised members to desist from anything that would bring shame to them. He further enjoined them to avoid selling of fake or expired products.
For his part, the President General of NAPPMED, Anambra State Chapter, Chief Benson O. Ibeneme, appreciated the NAPPMED Chairman of Njikoka Unit, Hon. Christopher Okolo, for the giant strides the association had recorded under his leadership. Chief Ibeneme also encouraged all to keep up with the good work they were doing in the association.
Speaking to Fides, the Chairman of NAPPMED, Njikoka Unit, Hon. Christopher Okolo, said the Unit covered the 6 towns in Njikoka LGA. Hon. Okolo who explained that their major function was to sell drugs prescribed by doctors, noted that they were in partnership with the Ministry of Health and some other health agencies for a better healthcare delivery.
‘We work very well with the Ministry of Health and other health agencies. We are also regulated by the Pharmaceutical Council of Nigeria, PCN. They are the ones who issue licences to our members,’ he said.
Highlights of the event were unveiling of NAPPMED’s shuttle bus, Calender for 2020/2021 and launch of the 50 million Naira ultra-modern secretariat building.
Other awardees in the event were the member representing Anaocha/Njikoka/Dunukofia Federal Constituency, Hon. Barr. Val Ayika; Chairman, COSCO Investment Nigeria Limited, Chief Cosmas Ogugua Agagbo; Chief Ezekiel Okeke, CEO, River Football Club of Nigeria; Chief Dr. and Mrs. Nwankwo Tochukwu; Sir Nathan Enemuo; CEO Safanaco Technical Nig. Ltd, Ozo Nnamdi Nwabachili, and Onowu Chinemeze na Nawfia, Chief Ifechukwu Paul Chukwunwike.