Buried Drugs Being Unearthed At Nugegoda
By Chrishanthi Christopher
The Cosmetic Devices & Drugs Control Authority (CD&DCA) found a large cache of pharmaceutical drugs and cosmetics buried in a compound belonging to a leading pharmaceutical importing company, last week.
It is learnt that the cache, which consists of food supplements, vitamins, pharmaceutical drugs and cosmetics have been buried behind a store-house in Nugegoda.
CD&DCA Director Dr. Hemantha Beneregama told The Sunday Leader on Friday that a team from the CD&DCA had been sent to Nugegoda on a tip off from a neighbour.
Under the Cosmetics Devices & Drugs Act no person can store or destroy pharmaceuticals without permission from the relevant authority.
“Any disposal should be done under the supervision of the CD&DCA officers,” Beneregama says. Moreover, he said that burying was not the proper disposal method that should be followed when disposing pharmaceuticals. “They should be burnt. But large quantities of drugs cannot be destroyed by burning as they need high temperatures to be completely destroyed,” Dr. Beneregama added. “We need incinerators like the one at the Holcim Cement Factory. Even we use it sometimes,” he said. It is learnt that the CD&DCA has sealed the building and declared the premises out of bounds for the company. “They should have informed us and it is an unacceptable way of destroying the products,” Beneregama said. “For that matter they cannot even store in those premises without our approval,” he added. The team of Food & Drugs Inspectors of the CD&DCA who visited the site on Friday morning was digging a 20 x 30ft area of the compound. “It is huge and it will take till Monday evening to unearth the stuff,” CD&DCA, Food & Drug Inspector Amith Perera told The Sunday Leader. He said that the products had been discarded as they had passed the date of expiry. Dr. Beneregama said that written explanations had been called for from the importer and that legal action would be taken against the company.