By Hassan Zaggi
In an effort to improve pharmaceutical research in the country, the Nigeria Academy of Pharmacy, has established a Research and Innovation Center which is christened after Chief Oludolapo Akinkugbe.
This is even as a distinguished scientist and former Vice Chancellor, Benson Idahosa University, Professor Ernest Benson Izevbigie, has called for the translation of research findings into societal values.
Announcing the establishment of the research centre, at the Academy’s annual investiture ceremony in Lagos, recently, President, Nigeria Academy of Pharmacy, Prince Julius Adelusi-Adeluyi, said it is a vehicle the group has been created to give “enduring impact to research and development in Nigeria’s pharmaceutical space.”
Prince Adelusi-Adeluyi, however, reiterated that the Academy of Pharmacy owes the 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 the African region.
While announcing the establishment of the research and innovation centre, Prince Adelusi-Adeluyi, said: “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.”
However, in recognition for his huge contributions to the growth of the pharmaceutical sector in the country, the Academy presented a lifetime achievement award to Chief Oludolapo Ibukun Akinkugbe, while General Theophilus Yakubu Danjuma on the other hand, bagged an Honorary Fellowship of the Nigeria Academy of Pharmacy.
“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,” he added.
Speaking while delivering a keynote lecture at the event titled, ‘From Plant to Patient: Driving Research and Innovation for Industry’,Professor Ernest Benson Izevbigie, insisted that pharmaceutical research has a major role to play in nation building.
Professor Izevbigie whose ground-breaking work on the use of bitter leaf, Vernonia Amygdalina in cancer and diabetes management has been applauded globally, explained how he has used bitter leaf in the management of breast cancer, prostate cancer and cervical cancer with results better than western drugs.