Saturday, September 22, 2018 7:56 pm
By Daniels Ekugo
The Nigeria Academy of Pharmacy has made a passionate case for better, safer, more convenient and more affordable medicines and treatment regimens for diseases that afflict mankind, especially those that are endemic to our region of the world at its annual Investiture ceremony in Lagos.
The well attended occasion was marked by the presentation of a Lifetime Achievement Award to Chief Oludolapo Ibukun Akinkugbe for his huge contribution to the growth of pharmaceutical sector in Nigeria while General Theophilus Yakubu Danjuma bagged an Honorary Fellowship of the Nigeria Academy of Pharmacy.
Speaking, President, Nigeria Academy of Pharmacy, Prince Julius Adelusi-Adeluyi noted that the “bestowal of the award on Chief Oludolapo Ibukun Akinkugbe is a token of our appreciation of his enormous strides not only in the Pharmacy profession but indeed in all other aspects of human endeavor. As he turns 90 in December, it is only fitting and proper that his number one constituency, Pharmacy, kicks off the celebration of an illustrious role model whose legacy of love, sacrifice and service would be forever etched in our hearts and minds.”
“It is in the same vein that we induct General Theophilus Yakubu Danjuma’s investiture as only the second ever Honorary Fellow of the Academy. He remains one of the most passionate supporters of the Pharmacy profession and a most generous benefactor of scientific research,” he added.
According to Adelusi-Adeluyi, “the Academy of Pharmacy owes society a duty to help unravel better, safer, more convenient and more affordable medicines and treatment regimens for diseases that afflict mankind, especially those that are endemic to our region of the world.”
The high point of this year’s ceremony was the announcement of the Academy’s Research and Innovation Center which is named after Chief Oludolapo Akinkugbe. According to the Academy, this is a vehicle we created to give enduring impact to research and development in Nigeria’s Pharmaceutical space.
“It is for this reason that research is central to our operations, one of the major reasons, indeed, that the Academy came to being. We want to complement local and international efforts that support scientific research and research activities. Much of the work we have done in this regard has been in the area of advocacy, in engaging government and policy makers on the essence of scientific research and why it is critical to provide better funding and other moral support to scientific research focused institutions as well as individual researchers.”
General Danjuma who is also the Chairman of May and Baker Nigeria Plc, donated N10 million to the Olu Akinkugbe Research and Innovation Centre to support the advancement of research and development in the country.
Professor Ernest Benson Izevbigie, a distinguished scientist and former Vice Chancellor, Benson Idahosa University, in his keynote lecture at the event titled, From Plant to Patient: Driving Research and Innovation for Industry called for the translation of research findings into societal values.
Prof. Izevbigie whose ground-breaking work on the use of bitter leaf, Vernonia Amygdalina in cancer and diabetes management has commanded critical acclaim globally provided critical research insights into how he has used bitter leaf in the management of breast cancer, prostate cancer and cervical cancer with results better than western drugs.
The Nigeria Academy of Pharmacy is a specialized academy that among others, seeks to promote scientific research and professional development especially in the health, pharmaceutical and related sectors in order to help overcome challenges posed by pain and disease as well as fast-track social and economic development in Nigeria and beyond.
The event had eminent personalities that included, Senator Daisy Danjuma, Prof. Oladipo Akinkugbe, professor of medicine, Chief Oba Otudeko, former chairman of First Bank Plc, Pharm. Jimi Agbaje, managing director, JayKay Pharmacy; Pharm. Ike Onyechi, managing director, Alpha Pharmacy; Pharm. Nnamdi Okafor, managing director, May & Baker Plc, Bhushan Akshikar, managing director, Glaxosmithkline Plc, Dr Obi Peter Adigwe, the newly appointed Director General, National Institute for Pharmaceutical Research and Development (NIPRD), NAPharm Vice President, Sir Ifeanyi Atueyi, chairman, Merit Pharmaceuticals, Dr Lolu Ojo, Pharm. Nnamdi Obi, Mazi Sam Ohuabunwa, former managing director, Neimeth Pharmaceuticals, Founder, Alpha Pharmacy, Sir Ike Onyechi, Prof. Kemi Odukoya, former dean, Faculty of Pharmacy, University of Lagos (UNILAG); Prof. Mbang Femi-Oyewo, former dean, Faculty of Pharmacy, Olabisi Onabanjo University (OOU) amongst others in attendance.