By Samuel Adegoke
The National Agency for Food and Drug Administration and Control (NAFDAC) has again warned the public against the use of Sniper and all other brands of ‘’Dichlorvos’’ (DDVP) in the preservation of foodstuffs, stressing that it has health implications that can cause death.
A statement by Resident Media Consultant to the agency, Mr Sayo Akintola, quoted the agency’s Director General, Prof. Mojisola Adeyeye, as reiterating the dangers inherent in the continuous misuse and misapplication of Sniper and other brands of Dichlorvos by the public, particularly grain merchants, beans aggregators and dried fish sellers.
According to her, the continuous misuse of the dangerous agrochemicals in the preservation of foodstuffs is replete with health implications with symptoms such as weakness, headache, tightness in chest, blurred vision, salivation, sweating, nausea and vomiting. Others are diarrhea, abdominal cramps, eye and skin irritation, eye pain, runny nose, lack of appetite, dizziness, convulsions, low blood pressure and possibly death.
She pointed out that the danger made the agency introduce some regulatory measures which include immediate ban on the importation and manufacture of Sniper and all other Dichlorvos in 100ml packsize only which was found to be the product readily available in unauthorized places.
Adeyeye further disclosed that NAFDAC has put in place measures against misuse and misapplication of this hazardous agrochemical which include a ban on hawking and prohibited sale of crop protection products in the open market and supermarkets nationwide.
She said the agency has also embarked on massive sensitization workshops in collaboration with relevant stakeholders on safe and responsible use of crop protection products on agricultural commodity storage, conducted for farmers, grain merchants and aggregators in seven locations across the country.
‘’NAFDAC in collaboration with relevant stakeholders organized two sensitization workshops for Agro-input Dealers on Safe and Responsible use of Crop Protection Products in Kano and Oyo states prior to the outbreak of Covid-19. However, this will be extended to other parts of the country when the condition is more favorable.’’, she said.
Prof. Adeyeye emphasized that the main uses of Dichlorvos (DDVP) are for insect control in food storage areas, greenhouses and barns, and for parasite control in livestock, insisting that Dichlorvos is generally not used on outdoor crops.
She noted with dismay that despite several warnings by the agency, some traders have continued to misuse and misapply the banned agrochemical to preserve foodstuffs, thereby endangering the lives of unsuspecting consumers.
‘’The agency wishes to inform the public that our offices nationwide as part of their Post Marketing Surveillance activities are to ensure enforcement of these regulatory measures and take appropriate sanction against defaulters’’, she further warned.