The Chief Executive Officer of the Foods and Drugs Authority (FDA), Hudu Mogtari, has stated that the decision to regulate the advertisement of drugs and food products in the media, under the Public Health law, is not meant to destroy the business of any individual or group of persons in the country.
“FDA has no intention to collapse any person’s business.” He said this at a stakeholder meeting in Accra with the media and media regulatory organisations in the country such as the National Media Commission, Ghana Journalists Association, the Advertising Association of Ghana (AAG), the Ghana Independent Broadcasters Association (GIBA).
He said the efforts being made to control the advertisement of food and drugs in the media, was meant to promote public health and safety.
Mr Mogtari said the FDA was mandated by the Section 114 of the Public Health Act to control the advertisements of regulated products, including herbal medicines, and food supplements, cosmetics, household chemical substances and medical devices, to ensure accurate information was delivered to the public.
Mr Mogtari, said the FDA would ensure that the health of the citizens was not compromised through the food and drugs they consumed, saying in spite of the law, some individuals continue to advertise food and drugs beverages, without approval from the authority.
Mr Mogtari expressed concern about the incessant advertisement on alcohol and, cautioned that if the practice was not nipped in the bud, it could be injurious to children and the youth and advised the media to ensure that the adverts they broadcast and publish in their medium were approved by the FDA.
The Head of Drug Enforcement Department of FDA, Mr Thomas Amedzro, in a presentation on Public Health Act provisions on Advertisement, said Section 2 of the law stated that, “A person shall not advertise a drug, a herbal medicinal product, medical device or cosmetic for the treatment or cure for diseases specified in the Fifth Schedule” of the law”.
Some of the diseases, he mentioned were diabetes, hypertension, infertility, gonorrhea, HIV/AIDS cancer, convulsion and fibroid.
An Executive Member of the GIBA, George Fausta Baffoe, in his remarks advised the FDA “to hasten slowly” in enforcing Section 114 of the Public Health Act
By Kingsley Asare