By Gift BayoThe National Association of Nigerian Traditional Medicine Practitioners (NANTMP) has urged the National Assembly to expedite the passage of the National Traditional Medicine bill, asserting that it holds the key to the nation’s overall well-being and economic prosperity.
Dr Shaba Maikudi, the National President of NANTMP, emphasised the importance of the bill at the official inauguration of the association’s newly elected executive members in Abuja.
Maikudi called on President Bola Tinubu not only to ensure the swift assent to the bill after its passage but also to oversee its effective implementation.
The proposed legislation aims to bring clarity and development to the traditional medicine profession, promoting the cultivation and utilisation of roots and herbs.
Citing the success stories of China and India, which have enacted traditional medicine laws and reaped local and international dividends, Maikudu underscored the need for Nigeria to follow suit.
He revealed ongoing collaborations with foreign embassies, including China, India, and Switzerland, on exchange programs related to traditional medicine.
Maikudu expressed the association’s commitment to securing land for a National Secretariat in Abuja, lobbying for the establishment of traditional medicine boards in all states, and collaborating with research institutions to create a Federal College of Traditional Medicine Technology.
The National President also emphasised the intention to establish departments of traditional African medicine in selected universities across Nigeria.
Maikudu urged practitioners to align with the Federal Ministry of Health to uphold government policies, including data capturing to meet World Health Organisation standards.
Mohammed Njawa, former Secretary General of NANTMP, urged Nigerians to take pride in traditional medicine, describing it as part of the nation’s heritage.
He called for collective efforts to ensure the passage and implementation of the National Traditional Medicine bill.
NANTMP is actively collaborating with the Ministry of Science and Technology and the Raw Material Research Council to advance traditional medicine in Nigeria.
The association remains steadfast in developing indigenous medicine and upholding Africa’s traditional medicinal pride.
The collaboration has garnered support from the Federal Ministry of Innovation, Science, and Technology, represented by Mrs Aina Folasade.
Head of Commerce at the High Commission of India in Nigeria, Pranay Sinha, pledged India’s support for the establishment of a traditional medicine hospital in collaboration with the Ministry of Health and WHO.
The call for swift legislative action echoes the commitment to nurture and elevate Nigeria’s traditional medicine sector for the nation’s enduring health and well-being.
Edited by Dorcas Jonah/Isaac Aregbesola