Pharmacists call on Nigerian government to stop the retailing of drugs in open air markets – Tola Adenle

September 26, 2015


The call by practising pharmacists for government to put an end to open markets sale of drugs in the country is long overdue.

Several years ago, an acquaintance who had travelled to Onitsha in Nigeria’s eastern part called to inform me that she brought me a present she knew I would like. Needless to say I looked forward to getting the gift.

She stopped by and brought out a cheap plastic bag which surprised me as I could not imagine what a cheap plastic bag used in open markets to pack tomatoes and the like could contain that would interest me.

I was shocked when she untied the bag and flung the contents – perhaps hundreds of medication capsules – on the floor!

Kongo tetracycline ti mo ba nyin ra ni Oja Onitsha niyen”! [That is a measuring jar of tetracycline that I purchased for you from Onitsha market]

She told me how huge bowls of all sorts of antibiotics were sold by the “Kongo”, a measuring bowl that would contain about the content of two litres, at Onitsha. It is the same measure that is common in markets for selling gari, uncooked rice, uncooked beans … In fact, I’ve seen women remove the type of container from rice or whatever and use it to measure granulated sugar at open markets but that is still a very far cry from handling potent drugs the way it’s done in Nigeria’s open air markets.


Saturday, September 26, 2015. 6:20 a.m. [GMT]






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2 Comments on “Pharmacists call on Nigerian government to stop the retailing of drugs in open air markets – Tola Adenle”

  1. emotan77 Says:


    This is outrageous! No wonder the drugs are not working any more. The Lord will deliver us in Jesus name.




    • emotan77 Says:

      Dear Ronke,

      You are very correct that abuse of antibiotics in Nigeria is so rampant that it must account for why the drugs are no longer that effective. Retailing tetracycline and other such drugs in an open market is not only unsanitary but it allows quacks who make their deadly “capsules” with nary any knowledge of pharmacy to engage in murder of innocent people who flock to the open air markets for their medication because of the “cheaper” prices.




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