The National Drug Authority (NDA) – an organization responsible for regulating drugs – has taken action in the Greater Luwero districts by shutting down 86 drug shops and pharmacies.
Earlier this week, both NDA and the police collaborated on a campaign to ensure compliance by inspecting drug outlets in Luwero, Nakaseke, and Nakasongola districts.
William James Tamale, the NDA’s Chief Regional Inspector for Kampala Extra, disclosed on Friday that this operation resulted in the closure of 86 drug shops and pharmacies for operating without proper authorization.
Some establishments lacked licenses from NDA, while others were being managed by unqualified personnel.
Tamale clarified that the NDA enforcement team also confiscated 178 boxes of drugs valued at 44.5 million Shillings from these unauthorized outlets.
These drugs have been transported to NDA offices in Nakawa, Kampala city.
They will be returned to the owners if they meet the necessary operational requirements. Failure to comply within the specified time frame will lead to the destruction of the drugs.
Joseph Kisakye, the Assistant District Health Officer for Luwero District, expressed support for these operations, emphasizing their role in organizing outlet activities and ensuring the safety of clients.
Kisakye noted that despite issuing closure notices to several unlicensed clinics in Luwero, many remain open.
He lauded NDA’s efforts but also urged them to educate the public about the distinctions between drug shops, pharmacies, and clinics, as applicants often misunderstand these categories, resulting in the operation of unlicensed facilities.
John Ojokuna, the Luwero District Police Commander, joined the conversation by requesting NDA’s assistance in raising public awareness about the differences among drug-related establishments.
He pointed out that some operators mistakenly apply for licenses for one type of facility and end up running another.
Approximately, there are 440 drug shops in Luwero district, 220 in Nakaseke, and 140 in Nakasongola.
In a recent incident, Harriet Namatovu, a midwife at Luwero Hospital, was arrested by Police and NDA for allegedly stealing government drugs worth five million Shillings.
The arrest took place at Kasana trading center in Luwero town, where Namatovu attempted to sell the drugs to an NDA representative posing as a private clinic buyer.
She was caught with two bags containing government drugs clearly marked as not for sale.