Nigerian Food and Drug Agency, NAFDAC alerts Nigerians “Some bitters we approved are spiked and dangerous to health”


The National Agency for Food and Drug Administration and Control (NAFDAC) in Nigeria have raised alarm over the grave danger some health herbal beverages pose, while admitting that the agency approved some of these beverages.

According to People’s Gazette, the food and drug agency highlighted the manufacturers of a herbal intoxicant, known as ‘Kurkura’ and alcoholic bitters in the country.

NAFDAC director-general Mojisola Adeyeye admitted the agency’s misstep at a press briefing held in Abuja on Friday. She maintained that the agency’s findings revealed high concentrations of tobacco and cannabis use in the products.

“Kurkura is an illicit product illegally consumed for the sole aim of getting intoxicated. The substance when abused can be harmful to the body organs such as the brain, kidney, and liver.

The damage to the kidney and liver cannot be overemphasised,” Ms Adeyeye said. “This substance can cause irrational thinking, and an altered state of mind, which if taken by a driver can lead to a road traffic accident with the attendant fatality consequences or can lead to criminal behaviours such as rape, kidnapping, and murder.”

READ: Africa: Nigeria’s Food Regulating Agency, NAFDAC Says Food Vendors Are Using Embalming Chemicals To Preserve Fish, Meat

She added that NAFDAC impounded dangerous herbal aphrodisiacs various shops in Zaria, Kaduna. These include ‘Gagare Man Power’, ‘Minister For Man Power’, ‘Almenjou For Lazy Men in Bed’, ‘Nisan Zango Karfin Maza’, ‘Shagalin Ka Man Power’, ‘Dakan Jia Man Power enhancement’, ‘Wuff Male Sexual Performance’ and ‘Afafata For Sexual Drive’.

In her comments, Ms Adeyeye noted that several drugs were used to manufacture the products, despite the maker’s claim they were completely herbal. This includes ‘Hyergra 200’ (Sildenafil Citrate tablet), ‘Amafranil tablets’ (Clomipramine tablet 25mg)’, and ‘Cannon Extra’ (Paracetamol 500mg+Caffeine 30mg).

“The owner admitted that he dissolves the Hyergra 200, Cannon Extra, and the Amafranil in a drum and mixes the content with boiled Kanafari, Garlic, Dundu, Marke, Hankufa, Sweetener, and Sodium Benzoate to make up the Man Power preparation,” Ms Adeyeye explained. An alcoholic bitters product Japata Alcoholic was named. NAFDAC said the product in circulation was laced with marijuana compared to the registered product that had only ethanol.

“The alcoholic content was doubled compared with the registered product. The retained samples, kept at the point of registration, did not cause any injury to the animals,” Ms Adeyeye said. “The product laced with cannabis was said to cause altered state of mind and psychological problems to the user. The owner of the company is on the run and the matter has been shared with NDLEA.”

This is the second time the drug agency is raising concerns over Japata, an alcoholic drink produced by Chigodson International Company Ltd. In May, the agency said its laboratory investigation showed that Japata Alcoholic Bitters was contaminated, unwholesome, and unfit for humans to consume. Ms Adeyeye promised that the agency would continue with the raid on other illegal production outlets and that the perpetrators will be dealt with in line with the extant laws and regulations.

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