The Honourable Minister of State for Health has pledged to support the Institute of Public Analysts of Nigeria (IPAN) to ensure that their goals of better nationwide healthcare services are realized.
Dr. Mamora made this pledge of support in his office when members of IPAN paid him a courtesy visit on the 14th of December, 2020. The visitors disclosed that they came to commend the Health Ministry’s remarkable response to the COVID-19 pandemic that has benefited all Nigerians and to also seek the intervention of the Honourable Minister in respect of some challenges facing the Institute.
The challenges as read out by the Chairman of the Governing Council include:
Facilitating the inclusion of IPAN in the Governing Council of the Federal Competition and Consumer Protection Council (FCCGC); Standards Organization of Nigeria (SON); National Agency for Food and Drugs Administration and Control (NAFDAC); and other agencies where testing is a requirement for certification and quality assessment;
The Chairman also seeks the recognition of the seal of quality of the Institute on Certificate of Analysis issued by IPAN’s registered laboratories. This, he said confers authenticity on the certificates and prevent quackery. He further said that “this could be done by directing all agencies and parastatals of the Ministry to recognize the seal without further delay;
The IPAN Chairman further wants bailout fund to the laboratories as part of Government’s support to Nigerians. He disclosed that the cost of chemicals, consumables and equipment have placed so much pressure on independent laboratory owners and deserves Government’s intervention;
The Chairman further said that “It is also the intention of IPAN to establish training and research laboratories in each of the geo-political zones to support Public health and assurance of food safety in Nigeria among, others.
In response, the Honourable Minister said: “You know that we are all here to assist you in carrying out your own assignment as provided by the law of the land. Be rest assured that we would look at the requests and do the needful within the ambit of what is available.” He highlighted some of the key interest areas as contained in their request:
On Bail-out fund, the Minister of State drew the attention to the twin occurrence of COVID-19 pandemic and ENDSARS protest which have compounded issues in the nation. Those notwithstanding, the Minister promised to see what can be done about the request. Dr. Mamora also urged IPAN to work in harmony with other agencies in FMOH towards attainment of its goals.
Regarding the Institute’s desire to establish training and research laboratories in each geo-political zone to support public health and assurance of food safety, he acknowledged the importance of food safety and called on the group to work on the initiative and come up with the cost.
The Honourable Minister further assured the delegation that his office will look into the file with which they purchased a land to build their organization’s secretariat and do all within his power to get the dispute on that land, resolved.
Earlier in his address, the chairman of the IPAN governing council, Dr. Oluwafemi Oyediran seized the opportunity of the visit to felicitate with the Honourable Minister of State on his appointment. He also commended the efforts of Dr. Mamora together with the Honourable Minister of Health, Dr. Osagie Ehanire at combating the spread of COVID-19 in the country.
Dr. Oluwafemi stated that the Institute was established by IPAN Act CAP. I 16 LFN 2004 (Formerly Decree No.100 of 1992) to examine, register public analysts and analytical laboratories practitioners and regulate their practice under the supervision of the Federal Ministry of Health; elaborating that a registered member of the institute, who by virtue of his/her knowledge, training, skills, competence and integrity is authorized by law to analyze consumer and health–related products such as: food, drug, medical devices, cosmetics, water, chemicals, chemically and biologically – based consumer products, etc. and issue certificates regarding their composition, quality, safety and efficacy.
Those present at the courtesy visit include the officials of the Federal Ministry of Health who were with the Honourable Minister of State as well as Board members of IPAN including Dr. Oluwafemi Oyediran, Aliyu A. Angara, Christian U. Egbo, and Dr. Daluri J.M Adam.
By Kasie-Agu Constance (SIO)
Signed: Olujimi Oyetomi, Director of Media & P.R., FMOH.