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24 arrested, 30 chemists shut down in Nairobi crackdown

At least 24 fake Pharmacists have been arrested and 30 Chemists closed in the past week in a crackdown being carried out in Nairobi County by the Pharmacy and Poisons Board (PPB) officials targeting illegal pharmaceutical outlets.

The apprehended individuals will be arraigned and charged for offenses under the PPB Act, which prohibits operating a pharmaceutical business without a license from the Board.

“Since we started the operation last week on Monday, so far we have been able to arrest 24 persons and managed to close 30 pharmaceutical outlets,” PPB Inspector Dr Tom Mwangi said.

Dr Mwangi said the operation aims to eliminate counterfeit pharmacists and illicit pharmaceutical outlets, prioritizing public health protection.

“Illegal pharmaceutical outlets pose a public health danger to the public, considering that they don’t meet the standards set by PPB. Medicines are not stored in the right manner. You also find they are run by Professionals who are not registered pharmacists,” he said.

He also said such outlets were at times used as avenues to sell illegal drugs such as narcotics.

“You will find there will be sale of medicines without prescription which promotes even sale of narcotics and psychotropic substances without prescriptions,” added Dr Mwangi.

He made the remarks on Thursday in Mbotela, Nairobi County where the PPB officials in partnership with the officers from the National Police Service were able to shut down two illegal chemists.

“Right now, we are in Mbotela area of Nairobi County where in this area we have done mapping and identified two illegal premises, and today in the company of the National Police Service officers we’ve managed to arrest the operators and ceased medicines from the illegal premises,” said Dr Mwangi.

In addition to enforcement actions, PPB said that they are implementing regulations to oversee pharmaceutical sales representatives, ensuring compliance with professional standards and ethical practices in the industry.

Established under the Pharmacy and Poisons Act, Cap 244 Laws of Kenya, PPB serves as the National Drug Regulatory Authority within the Ministry of Health, tasked with regulating pharmacy practice and ensuring the safety, quality, and efficacy of medical products and health technologies.

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