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The study Examined Press and sensitization of the public on fake drugs in Nigeria: an evaluation of the coverage of NAFDAC by the Nigeria press. The study adopted survey research design and a sample of 79 which was derived from a total population of 98 using Taro Yamane sample size derivation formula. Question was used as the main data collection instrument for the collection of data from the respondent. All the data collected were presented in table and analysed qualitatively using simple percentage. Findings made from the study indicated that the masses are aware of the role played by the press (NTA) in sensitizing the public on fake drug issues and the activities of NAFDAC in curbing fake drug in Nigeria. The study further showed that men and women of the press endeavour to cover all the activities of NAFDAC toward curbing fake drugs in Nigeria and this they achieve through proper coverage of NAFDAC actions toward fake drugs.   It was noted in the findings too, that most of the  members of the public are fully satisfied with the  sensitization programme carried  on fake drugs carried out by the press(NTA). Therefore, it is recommended in the study that the public should endeavour to watch and listen to the media in order to be well informed on fake drug issues and Press men and women should continue to cover and report issues of fake drug on most of their programme.










Fake drugs had been a major problem of every society that threatens the lives of people all over the world. According to experts, the negative impact of fake drugs on the society is more than that of either narcotic agents or the combined effects of malaria, HIV/AIDS and armed robbery (Akunyili, 2005). This is why the press and  World Health Organization recently, alerted the international community on the need of sensitizing the mass on the effect of fake drugs (WHO, 2005). Cooperation as well as exchange of information by the press between governments and drug companies in combating this menace is expected to provide better results.  It’s on this note that the researcher is moved to investigate  press sensitization of the public on fake drugs in Nigeria.

1.1 Background Of The Study

The 19th century marked the beginning of the evolution of press in Nigeria. Precisely in 1846, two missionaries Hope Waddel, with the help of his assistant Samuel Edgerly, established the first printing press at Calabar, South Eastern Nigeria. The Hope Waddel Press, as the press was later named, was used for the mass production of religious tracts and booklets. The Missionary Rev. Henry Townsend raised the bar when he established another press in the Western part of the country in 1854. He also started a school of printing where he trained pupils at Abeokuta. Five years later, Townsend started Iwe Irohin, the first newspaper in Nigeria. Unfortunately, the Mission Printing Press established by Townsend folded up in 1867 due to the cultural and political crisis that erupted between the Egba people and the European settlers. (Daramola & Ifedayo.,2006).
Prior to the collapse of Townsend’s printing press, what can be regarded as an evolving printing industry had already taken root. This evolution can be attributed to a number of factors. First, the proliferation of missionary activities in Nigeria resulted in the setting up of presses which served as a means of publicizing and propagating the different faiths. As a matter of fact, many of the missionaries came with their printing presses. Second, the evolving and flourishing newspaper industry at the time also stimulated the establishment of printing  presses. Worthy of mention are the printing presses set up in 1862 by Robert Cambell, and the Caxton Printing Press established in 1875 by Richard Blaize. As records indicate, by the end of the 1880s not less than five printing presses had been established in Lagos (Daramola & Ifedayo.,2006).

The third factor is the quest for high quality printing. This became the driving force behind the publishers’ investment in efficient printing equipment. Thus, by 1910 modern and more efficient printing presses were established in Lagos. This made it possible for newspapers (the major markets for printing presses.) to avail themselves of a wide range of services in Nigeria (Echeruo, 1976).

1.2 Statement Of The Problem

The problem of fake drugs is wide spread affecting mostly developing country like Nigeria. The actual prevalence of fake (counterfeit) drugs is difficult to ascertain partly due to failure of the majority of member nations in the World Health Organisation to report instances of drug counterfeiting occurring in their countries (Newton et al., 2006) but also just like other crimes, drug counterfeiting is an underground business that often comes to light only when deaths occur. The extent of the severity of fake drug problem varies widely between countries, ranging from <1% in more developed nations to 50% in some poor countries such as Nigeria (WHO, 2005).   In Nigeria, the problem of fake drugs has significantly improved from 41% in 2002 through 16.7% in 2006 (Akunyili, 2007) to 10%. This is an indication that the rate of fake drug in Nigeria is a great problem. As a result of this, the study tends to examine press sensitization of the public on fake drugs in Nigeria: Analysis of the coverage of NAFDAC by Nigeria press.

1.3 Purpose Of The Study

The main purpose of this study is to examine press sensitization of the public on fake drugs in Nigeria: Analysis of the coverage of NAFDAC by Nigeria press.

Other specific purposes are to examine,

  1. The role of the Nigeria press in sanitizing the masses on issues of fake drug in Nigeria.
  2. The extent the Nigeria press (NTA) has enhanced public awareness on fake drugs.
  3. The extent the Nigeria press (NTA) covers the activities of NAFDAC exposure of the level of fake drug sold in Nigeria markets.
  4. To ascertain how Nigeria press(NTA) ensures adequate coverage of fake drug exposure rate by NAFDAC in Nigeria.

1.4 Research Question

To carry out this study and arrive at credible result, the following research questions are addressed:

  1. What role has the Nigeria press (NTA) played in sensitizing the masses on issues of fake drugs in Nigeria?
  2. To what extent has Nigeria press (NTA) enhanced public awareness on fake drugs?
  3. To what extent do Nigeria press (NTA) covers the activities of NAFDAC exposure of fake drugs in Nigeria?
  4. How have Nigerian press(NTA) ensured adequate coverage of fake drug exposure rate by NAFDAC in Nigeria?


1.5 Signification Of The Study

The study is significant in that it  highlights various roles played by the press in sensitizing the masses on issues of fake drugs as well as the extent to which the press enhances public awareness on fake drug. The study is also of benefit  to the masses as it will highlight the extent the press covers the activities of NAFDAC exposure of fake drugs in Nigeria .The study will enable the masses realise that fake drugs are being traded  in  Nigeria. It  will further serve  as  source of  reference for researchers who will want to research on topics that deal on drugs.

1.6 Scope Of The Study

The scope of the study covers press sensitization of the public about fake drugs in Nigeria and was narrowed to Awka south and North  local Government area of Anambra state. In respect of the geographical location used, the study  also cover the level of press sensitization of the masses in respect of fake drugs in Nigeria and the activities of NAFDAC in curbing the spread of fake drugs.

1.7 Conceptual  Definition Of Terms

  • NAFDAC: National agency for food and Drug administration and control
  • Sensitizing: To educate the public or the masses.
  • Fake drug: Counterfeit drugs
  • Press: The  media  such as NTA which inform and educate the masses.



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