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CAPPA raps NAFDAC over fast-tracking trans fat regulations

By Taiwo Alimi

The Corporate Accountability and Public Participation Africa, (CAPPA) has urged The National Agency for Food and Drug Administration and Control (NAFDAC) to fast track the process of passing to law the trans fatty acid (TFA) regulations.

Speaking at the two-day journalists’ training for effective reporting of trans fat in Nigeria, in Lagos, executive director, Akinbode Oluwafemi, noted that the process of passing into law ‘The Fat and Oil Regulation 2019’ and ‘The Prepackaged Food and Water and Labeling Regulation’ is taking longer than necessary.

Oluwafemi

Said he: “It is our responsibility to within our current crisis elevate this debate because everyday people are dying as a result of consuming industrially produced trans fatty acid, so NAFDAC has actually drafted two regulations due to the hard work of some of the people here on the high table. The Fat and Oil Regulation 2019 and the Prepackaged Food and Water and Labeling Regulation meant to address issues of regulating trans fat in Nigeria. First thing you notice is that these laws are cited in 2019 and this is 2021, this basically just suggests that there is so much delay in the process. We like the process of passing the Trans fat regulation be fast tracked.

“The wellbeing of Nigerians should be a priority of government in 2021 owing to the devastating effects of the COVID-19 on the citizenry in year 2020. Eating right is one of the ways that this can happen and the approval of the Oils and Fats Regulations is definitely the right step.”

According to WHO, eliminating industrially-produced TFA from the food supply is one of the priority targets identified in the draft of the 13th General Programme of Work, which will guide the work of WHO in 2019-2023.

“WHO warned that increased intake of TFA (above 1% of total energy intake) is associated with increased risk of coronary heart disease events and mortality, which led to over 500,000 deaths globally in 2010.”

Oluwafemi informed that CAPPA had made its contribution to the draft regulations as well as recommended some changes so as to ensure Nigeria joins several countries who have virtually eliminated industrially-produced TFA from the food supply through implementation of systematic policy actions and monitoring programmes. WHO has set a 2013 target for the countries like Nigeria and this can only happen if the process is sped up.”

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