Sale of expired and fake drugs, a world problem: Burundi is not left out


The sale of fake and expired drugs has been the problem of the health sector around the world. Just of recent, the police discovered a large quantity of expired and fake drugs in the capital of Burundi. The drugs were eventually seized in a private house on 3rd Avenue in Muramvya, Kinama. The drugs included suppositories, quinine and paracetamol amongst other things.

The police reported that two people, the spouse and the brother of the accused, were arrested during the investigation. The police couldn’t arrest the accused, Jean Ndikumana, who had already left his home before the police arrived. He is being searched for at the moment.

In reaction to this, residents of the area said they were aware that the accused made fake drugs but ignored him. “His house is always closed. We don’t care that he made fake drugs”, says Nahimana, a resident of the area. In addition, “The health officials should control all drugs sold to ensure that they are not falsified once they expired otherwise they will kill us”, he said.

Another resident said that the government health representives need to work more in order to further discover manufacturers of fake drugs in the country.

Thadée Ndikumana, the spokesperson for the Ministry of Health, says that the accused used a number of techniques to falsify expiration dates. “He clears the drug’s packaging and updates the expiration dates using a stamp”, says Ndikumana.

Further more, Ndikumana said the fraudster can change the packaging to contain the wrong drugs. “If there is paracetamol in the box, he would exchange the container and leave the label saying it is quinine”.

The Health Ministry’s spokesman urges residents to properly check genuine drugs before purchasing them. “The health inspector will start an investigation to identify the suppliers and buyers of these drugs”, Ndikumana said.

similarly, the chairman of the pharmacy Order, Desire Bizimana, said that the government must be involved in combating drugs fraud. He further said that many children and adults have died as a result of the intake of fake drugs which is the main reason why it has to be resolves.

The Mayor of Bujumbura, Freddy Mbonimpa responded to the fraudulent act saying:

“the administration will also contribute to the fight against the scourge and gave a warning to local administrative officials. We made a decision that each time we discover administrative officials are complicit, they will be dismissed”.

Millions of people die yearly due to the intake of fake drugs around the world. The government of Burundi urges its citizen who are involved in such act to put a stop to it. He further appealed to other countries involved in such act to stop it in order to secure the good health of the people.

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