COVID-19: I did not bypass NAFDAC procedures, herbal practitioner says after disruption of product unveiling in Ogun
A herbal medicine practitioner, Paul Oni has denied bypassing the National Agency for Food and Drug Administration and Control (NAFDAC) procedures after officials of the agency reportedly disrupted the unveiling of an anti-COVID-19 herbal syrup in Abeokuta, Ogun State.
Oni was said to have planned to unveil the syrup at a briefing on Thursday at the Centenary Hall in the Ake axis of the state capital before it was reportedly stopped by the NAFDAC officials who stormed the venue in the company of some policemen and operatives of the Department of State Services (DSS).
According to him, only a few quantities of the syrup was produced to showcase to journalists and not in large quantity for sale.
He explained that the programme was meant to seek partnership and support, as well as raise for a fund for the product to undergo the proper processes and certification.
Oni who also decried the increase in the number of COVID-19 cases in the country lamented what he called outrageous approval levies by NAFDAC, saying he could not afford the outrageous cost of approval and clinical trials.
“The normal cost that you will incur in going through the NAFDAC process is about N600,000 which does not include the clinical trials of N1.5 million”.
“So, when I saw the cost, I concluded that I should seek help through a press conference. I am sure this herb can help people that have contracted COVID-19,” he said.
He alleged that all efforts to secure the support of the Minister of Health and other major stakeholders have not yielded positive results.
“Maybe through that, people will come to help me. NAFDAC will come to help me and give me a waiver; the Nigeria Institute for Medical Research will hear what I have said about them and they will come and assist me.
“This was the purpose of the press conference; I have not produced the Oxibiotics for sale. I just have a couple of bottles that I want to show NAFDAC and to the Nigeria Institute for Medical Research, as samples,” he stated.
Oni, however, said he remained undeterred by the action of the agency and promised to ensure that the product saw the light of the day.
He however insisted that the herb was ‘anti-viral and anti-malignant’ and capable of curing COVID-19.