Story: Robert Ayanful

Dr. Twum Barimah
Dr. Twum Barimah

The threat of nationwide demonstration issued by the Traditional Herbal Medicine Practitioners against what they termed exorbitant charges by the Mampong Centre for Research into Plant Medicine, as well as the delay in getting their drugs registered by the Food and Drug Board seemed to have expired without the action taken place.

Some members of the Association have expressed the view that the threat should be a wake up call to all relevant authorities concerned, as well as government.

Readers would recall that the President of the Traditional Herbal Medicine Practitioners issued the statement in Accra about a forth night ago, threatening and calling on all its members to embark on a massive nationwide demonstration against the practices of the above mentioned institutions.

Though the set date for the demonstration which was slated for the first week of June has expired without any sign of the intended demonstration, some of the members of the association said, they received the call as welcome news.

One of the members and Chief Executive Officer of Wo How Ne Sen Herbal Research Cectre at Agona Swedru Dr. Kofi Twum Barimah who spoke with The Moment on the intended demonstration lamented the exorbitant charges by the Mampong Center as well as the day by the FDB to register their drugs.

He disclosed that whiles it takes some few days for an imported drug to be accepted and registered by the Food and Drug Board; it takes not less than a year for a Ghanaian Herbal Drug to be accepted and registered by the FDB.

He hinted that apart from the delay the FDB, it cost the poor herbalist not less than GH¢ 1,000 from the day of submitting the drug to the day to registration.

He described the process too cumbersome and too beurocratic and therefore called on the government to do something about the situation.

According to Dr. Twum Barimah, such exorbitant charges and the cumbersome bureaucracy processes often forces some herbal medicine practitioners to operate in secret, a situation he pointed out would not be good for the country’s health delivery system.

He stressed that to make the practice of alternatives herbal medicine attractive, both the Mampong Center for Research into Plant Medicine and the Food and Drug Board should make their charges and process of registration flexible to be affordable by all.

According to him, unlike the recent past when traditional herbal medicine was despised by many, the situation has now changed with over 75 percent of Ghanaians population resorting to the use of alternative herbal medicine because of its potency and efficacy.

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