On behalf of the management and staff of the Pharmacists Council of Nigeria, I wish you a warm welcome to the month of February. As Healthcare workers battling in the frontlines of the second wave of the COVID-19 pandemic, I urge you all to continue to operate with the highest level of professional responsibility while equally providing yourselves and your team members with the highest level of personal protection possible.
As expected, the registration/renewal of licenses has commenced in earnest. With the renewed commitment, vigor and efficiency demonstrated by the registration and licensing directorate, I am convinced the licensure experience this year would be very seamless. Many of the applications so far received have been processed and licenses issued accordingly. These include all the successful candidates at the November, 2020 Pre-Registration Examination for Pharmacists (PEP) who have applied for their annual license to practice. These issued licenses are currently being dispatched to the respective States of residence. On this note, operators of pharmaceutical businesses are strongly advised to urgently register or renew their premises licenses as the National Enforcement Team of the PCN would commence enforcement activities very shortly.
In line with the ongoing automation project going on at the Council, it is important to note that Patent and Proprietary Medicine Vendors Licence (PPMVL) registration is now fully online. A number of processes and examinations have already been earmarked for automation this year.
In the month of January, two hundred and eighty-eight (288) fresh Pharmacy graduates who were successful at the 2020 Foreign Pharmacists Graduate Orientation Programme (FPGOP) were inducted at the PCN Head Office, Abuja. Please, join me to congratulate the new graduands into the Pharmacy profession.
Following a consultative meeting with key stakeholders on the implementation of the circular and scheme of service for the Pharmacist Consultant cadre, a steering committee consisting of PCN, the Secretariat of the West African Postgraduate College of Pharmacists (WAPCP), Nigeria Chapter of WAPCP, Nigeria Association of Pharmacists in Academia (NAPA) and Association of Hospitals and Administrative Pharmacists of Nigeria (AHAPN) was constituted. The meeting was chaired by the Chairman of the PCN Governing Council, Prof. Ahmed Tijjani Mora, mni. He will also serve as the Chairman of the steering committee. This committee is to put in place road map for timely implementation of the approval of the Head of the Civil Service of the Federation (HCSF).
In a bid to sanitize the chaotic drug distribution network in Nigeria, PCN in collaboration with key industry and government stakeholders have been working hard to ensure the concept of Coordinated Wholesale Centres (CWCs) as enshrined in the National Drug Distribution Guidelines becomes a reality. While we congratulate the Governor of Kano State, His Excellency, Dr. Abdullahi Umar Ganduje, OFR and Pharmaceutical Stakeholders in Kano State for the tremendous progress recorded so far with the Kano state project, it is particularly very disheartening that the leadership of City Pharmaceutical and Allied Partners(CPAPL) in Lagos are bent on frustrating the efforts put in place towards actualizing the CWC project in Lagos despite the support given to them by the Federal Government, Lagos State Government and the traditional institutions in the state. It is, therefore, appropriate to warn that Government may be forced to withdraw the approval given to CPAPL, the purpose-built vehicle for the actualization of the Lagos CWC, and take further necessary actions to protect the citizens from the effects of the illicit activities of merchants in the drug distribution system in the country.
With total submission to the will of God, I commiserate with the PSN and ACPN family as they mourn the death of a first-generation Community Pharmacist, Pharm (Mrs.) Marcelina Oluremi Onasanya, (PCN No: 000004), founder of Bola Chemists Lagos, who slept in the Lord on Thursday, January 28, 2021 at the ripe old age of 89 years. I also use this opportunity to commiserate with the families of other colleagues of ours that departed and already buried in the month of January, 2020. I pray God grants the families of the departed souls the fortitude to bear these losses.
Finally, the Council appreciates the efforts and hard work of all Pharmacists who have all worked together to ensure a safe pharmaceutical environment in the country.
Pharm. N. A. E. Mohammed, Ph.D, FPSN, FNIM, FPCPharm, FNAPharm