By Steven Enatu
The Uganda National Drug Authority (NDA) has warned that many herbal medicines on the market including manpower are adulterated with human medicine.
NDA has subsequently warned the public to desist from buying herbal products that are not approved and are being advertised for public consumption.
According to Michael Mutyaba, the Manager of Traditional and Complementary Medicine and Health Products at NDA , some of the health products that are advertised for public consumption in the name of curing certain diseases or boosting manpower are adulterated using human medicine whereas others are not clinically fit and have not been licensed.
He said the products are dangerous for human consumption and cannot work or be used as medicine.
A report by NDA indicates that 60% of Ugandans use herbal medicine implying that many people trust the medication.
The warning comes at a time when NDA is issuing strict guidelines for herbalists in the country as it enforces its mandate in section 33 of the NDA act. Among others, NDA is supposed to regulate herbal products that are commercialized from its manufacture, sale, distribution, clinical trials and adverts.
Meanwhile, Pius Ariho Mugumya, the Director of product safety at NDA says that the authority is liaising with Uganda Communication Commission and other partners as it embarks on continuous surveillance of broadcasting houses for illegal and misleading drug related adverts and promotions.
He said misleading information about herbal products makes them poisonous to the consumer.
“Advertisement messages about health products are supposed to be approved by NDA after vetting and approval of the product,” he said.
He further cautioned that herbalists and health product manufacturers are not supposed to make it public that their products cure diseases like cancer and syphilis.