NAFDAC presence in port is political – Aniebonam

Segun Oladipupo       |       
Founder of the National Association of Government Approved Freight Forwarders (NAGAFF), Dr. Boniface Aniebonam has queried the rationale behind the presence of the National Agency for Food and Drugs Administration and Control (NAFDAC) in the port while the Standards Organisation of Nigeria is not allowed in the port.

Aniebonam, who said that NAFDAC has a role to play in the examination of cargoes to avoid influx of banned drugs and food items into the country, added that SON is well primed  to halt the indesriminate  influx of substandard products into the country .

He therefore  alleged that such arrangement could only be due to political reasons.

Aniebonam,who doubles as the founder of New Nigerian Peoples’ Party (NNPP), noted that it is the responsibility of the government to protect lives and properties of citizens.

He reiterated that NAFDAC existence at the seaport has no significant role to play in trade facilitation.

He stressed the need for the federal government to review SON’s exit from port operations and NAFDAC existence at the seaports.

According to him, SON plays critical role in the examination of cargoes at the ports, stressing the need for its return in furtherance to seamless import and export operations.

He also called on the agency to embark on sensitization and campaign strategy in a bid to tackle issues of standards.

Recall that the federal government streamlined the number of agencies that operate at the nation’s seaports, culminating in the sack of the National Agency for Food, Drug Administration and Control NAFDAC, and the Standards Organisation of Nigeria SON.

But earlier in the year, the government reinstated NAFDAC into port operations.

He added that standard must not be compromised in the country, pointing out that all hand must be on deck for SON to live up to its responsibility.

Aniebonam however said ”SON is there shouting about standards but who is listening?

“Everything about life has to do with standards. So why is SON not in the ports and why is NAFDAC in the port?

“For me, it is a political motivation for NAFDAC. Every cargo coming into the port should be examined by SON. We are not satisfied with that decision,” he stated.

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