… Target 400,000 Children Across Nigeria For Deworming
By Ijeoma UKAZU |
The indigenous pharmaceutical company and pioneer manufacturers of intravenous fluids in Nigeria, Biomedical Limited is set to launch 22 new syrups and as well deworm 400,000 school children across the country.
Making this known to journalists in Lagos during a press conference, the Chairman, Biomedical Limited, Hon. Idowu Obasa said this move is to mark its 40th anniversary operating in Nigeria, adding that the occasion presents an opportunity to reflect on the journey and challenges that confront the company even as they expand their services for the benefit and wellbeing of Nigerians.
He said, ” Biomedical Limited is 40 years of existence as a pharmaceutical company. That may not amount to anything to certain persons. For us, it is pressure valve that challenges and reminds us constantly that we must keep raising the standards and meeting them.
“At a time when most medicines were being imported into the country and even those being produced in Nigeria is dominated by foreign multinationals, a courageous Nigerian ventures into manufacture of intra-venous fluids.
“This anniversary so offers us an opportunity to salute the courage of the original visioner, Dr. Farouk Abdulazeez, without whose dogged determination we will not be talking of 40 years anniversary today.
“In all its years of existence, Biomedical had focused on infusion production, but in this 40 year, we are breaking out into other products. First the syrups factory recently completed has started putting syrups in the market. We consider this a milestone,” Obasa stated.
He further said that, the occasion would afford the company to appreciate and recognise deserving business partners whose continuous support makes the story of Biomedical worth telling.
The Chairman said, despite the general misgivings about the workings of Nigerian Institutions, the Bank of Industry, BOI made this one possible as they proved to be different at least as far as the syrup factory of Biomedical is concerned.
Speaking on the challenges faced by the company this past 40 years, Obasa said,
“Nigeria is an import dependent country. Almost everything produced in Nigeria is derived from imported raw materials. In a country like this, the government still do not know how to resolve forex issues as at today and this has become precarious.
“Sometimes, we have to reduce two ships to one because containers are locked up at the wharf and this throw our plans into jeopardy. Definitely, we have to weather the storm but we are handicapped by lack of foreign exchange. It is not encouraging. For instance, the lack of forex doesn’t allow us to deliver our products at the cheapest possible prices which we would have loved to. We just have to swim with the tide. It is a tough economic environment. The main issue is the forex. It is expensive and not available.”
Furthermore, he complained the manner goods are diverted to a different port it was not meant for is worrisome, ” For instance; goods meant for Tin Can Island Port which is more efficient is diverted to Apapa port. If goods are diverted to Apapa port, it will take extra two months to get it cleared. So, we resort to prayers to avert goods diversion.
“One would think that if you are in pharmaceutical production, it is expected that government will protect your interest since doing that means, government would be protecting the populace. Government should not treat imported pharmaceutical goods same way they treat steel products,” he pleads.
Obasa called on the federal government to provide special privileges in form of concessions for pharmaceutical companies such as; good rates to purchase forex, access to Forex, smoothness in clearing of pharmaceutical goods at the ports, according to him, this is how the government can help improve the economy.
Biomedical Limited Company is set to launch its ultra-modern syrup factory on Friday, August 27 at Ilorin Kwara state while presenting its syrups to the market.