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NAFDAC prosecutes Lagos businessman over alleged sale of unregistered products

By Sandra Umeh & Adaeze Iroha on 20/02/2018

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A prosecution witness, Mr Folorunsho Idowu, on Monday told a Federal High Court in Lagos that a businessman, Ezeudu Emmanuel, sold unlabeled repacked food products, thereby endangering public health and safety.

Idowu, an Assistant Director at National Agency for Foods and Drugs Administration and Control (NAFDAC), said he received verbal complaints that the defendant was repackaging and distributing unregistered food products.

The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that the defendant, who was first arraigned before Justice Rita Ajumogobia in 2015, pleaded not guilty to the charges and was granted bail in the sum of N8.5 million.

Following the transfer of Ajumogobia from the Lagos Division of the court, the accused was re-arraigned before Justice Oluremi Oguntoyinbo on a 10-count charge bordering on product counterfeiting.

He also pleaded not guilty to the charges and was allowed to continue with the earlier bail.

At the resumed hearing of the case on Monday, the Prosecutor, Mr Shamaki Umar of NAFDAC, opened the case for the prosecution and called his first witness, Idowu.

The witness was led in evidence by the prosecutor, who tendered cartons of the food products as exhibits and were admitted in evidence.

Some of the exhibits include bottles of Mayonnaise, black Soy Sauce and tins of milk.

Idowu told the court that as an official of NAFDAC his schedule included receiving petitions or complaints, carrying out surveillance, investigations and inspection of fake products.

According to him, a complaint was received by his office in connection with a criminal act involving the defendant.

He said the complaint against the accused was verbal, adding that the agency receives both oral and written complaints.

In the case of the defendant, Idowu added that the agency carried out some investigations to ascertain its authenticity of the complaint or allegation.

The witness also told the court that although the name of the accused was not mentioned in the complaint, the complaint revealed that criminal activity was ongoing at No.15, Ipaye St., Surulere.

Justice Oguntoyinbo adjourned the case until March 23 for continuation of trial.

The prosecution alleged that the accused had on or before April 27, 2015, sold the unlabeled food products.

He was also alleged to have falsely relabeled, repackaged and distributed the food products without registering them with NAFDAC.

The offences contravened the provisions of Sections 1,1(a), 3, 4, and 5(a) of the Food, Drugs, and related Products (Registration etc.) Act, Laws of the Federation, 2004. (NAN)

Source News Express

Posted 20/02/2018 02:33:01 AM

 

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