NAFDAC Threatens Closure of 16,000 Water Factories
The National Agency for Food and Drug Administration and Control (NAFDAC) has vowed to shut down packaged water production facilities that fail its standards.
The agency said it would collaborate with various associations in efforts to sanitise the packaged water sector.
The Director-General of NAFDAC, Prof. Mojisola Adeyeye, at a virtual stakeholders’ meeting with packaged water producers in Abuja, committed NAFDAC to sanitising the industry.
A statement yesterday by Resident Media Consultant to NAFDAC quoted her as appealing to the 412 producers that participated in the interactive forum to always maintain the level of compliance with NAFDAC regulatory requirements.
Adeyeye also expressed dismay that shortly after procuring registration approval, many of the over 16,000 registered producers lower standards and produce products that endanger the health of consumers.
‘’Today we are gathered on this platform as producers of packaged water and we all know that the situation in Nigeria today is such that the entire Nigerian populace (including the healthy, elderly, pregnant women, children and the weak with low immunity) depend on packaged water for sustenance, as many believe falsely or rightly that the municipal water, where available, may hardly be safe for drinking,’’ she said.
Describing water as a unique product because it has no alternative, Adeyeye said everybody needed water or at least water-based products for hydration, proper digestion of food, drugs and other human needs.
‘’You are in the noble business of providing Nigerians with safe drinking water; but if you engage in activities that fall short of standards and regulatory requirements, you may be responsible for illness and even death of innocent Nigerians’’, she added.
Adeyeye appealed to the producers to ensure that they produce safe water for public consumption.
She added that the agency is ever ready for collaboration with the various associations with a view to sanitising the industry.
She stated that the agency would intensify its routine monitoring to ensure consistent compliance with standards and apply appropriate sanctions on defaulters and violators.
Adeyeye said packaged water production is a business that requires high sense of responsibility, hence nonchalant attitude should be eliminated through collective efforts.
She said: ‘’Your associations have the structure to reach and locate both legal and illegal producers of packaged water across the country, which could help regulators in weeding out those giving operators in the sector a bad name’’.
Both National presidents of the Association of Table Water Producers (ATWAP) Mrs. Tina Ativie and Water Producers Association of Nigeria (WAPAN) Mr. Egberi Odiri Mackson, commended NAFDAC and expressed their desires to collaborate with the agency to ensure sanity in the packaged water sector.