The National Agency for Food and Drug Administration and Control (NAFDAC) has come out to warn Nigerians against the use of bleaching creams saying many skin whitening products in the market can cause skin cancer and kidney failure. The Agency’s Director General, Prof. Mojisola Adeyeye, gave the warning in an interview on Thursday in Abuja.
She said, “In Nigeria, we have a lot of use of dangerous chemicals. One is Glutathione used as an injection. People inject it under their skins, with a promise that they will be lighter in a week or two. From Glutathione injection to other chemicals, the reason why we are so concerned about Glutathione is that it can cause skin cancer. It can cause kidney dysfunction and failure and this is what young people don’t know.
Adeyeye said, “First, philosophically I don’t know why somebody wants to bleach their skin, you should be proud of your color because, when you cross that threshold of desiring to be lighter, problems are associated with it.”
She said the agency’s Investigation and Enforcement Directorate would continue its surveillance to raid stores of illegal and unregistered whitening chemicals.
On drug abuse, the director general cautioned against the use of illicit drugs and the overdose of licit ones.
She said, “On drug abuse, you can use a drug rightly but you can use the same drug illicitly; take Codeine, for example, Codeine is an anti-toxin, it is an expectorant and that is the medical use. But, if you then use more than what you should of Codeine, it becomes illicit. So, NAFDAC has to do its job by looking at it from the illicit point of view. Take, for example, Tramadol; the medical use of Tramadol is at the strength of 50 and 100 milligrams, but those that come into the country are 500 milligrams that can fry anybody’s brain.