-As Bio-Generics Pledges N1 million For Hospital Pharmacists
A committee of six distinguished pharmacists has been inaugurated by the Pharmaceutical Society of Nigeria (PSN) to oversee the affairs of the forthcoming Bio-Generics Integrity Award for Pharmacists in Public Hospitals.
The committee members are Dr ‘Dere Awosika, chairman; Sir Ifeanyi Atueyi, vice chairman; Pharm. (Dr) Ifeanyi Okechukwu, secretary; Pharm. Hamza Yahaya, member; Pharm. (Mrs) Chinyere Osakwe, member and Pharm. Martins Oyewole, member.
Speaking at the inauguration programme which took place at PSN secretariat in Anthony, Lagos on 30 April, 2018, Pharm. Ahmed Yakasai, president of the Society, expressed satisfaction with the composition of the committee members, saying he was optimistic that they would achieve result.
Sharing similar features with the May & Baker Professional Excellence Service Award, the Bio-Generics Integrity Award for pharmacists in public hospitals is scheduled to be presented to the winner at the annual PSN national conference.
Aside from being officially confirmed as a pharmacist of high integrity, the winner of the award is expected to smile home at the conference with a N1 million prize money, courtesy of Bio-Generics Nigeria Limited.
The PSN helmsman further disclosed that once the Integrity Award initiative, which is meant to reward pharmacists in public hospitals, becomes consistent with its set goals, Bio-Generics has agreed to increase the prize money from N1 million to N5 million.
“To further show its seriousness and commitment to this cause, the company has entrusted the N 1 million for this year’s edition into our care. The criteria for the award will soon be published in Pharmanews and on social media platforms,” he reassured.
Yakasai also announced that the nomination of successful candidates would be done by non-pharmacists, after which the Integrity Award committee would choose the top five out of the lot.
“As I mentioned earlier, the eventual winner will be announced at the annual national conference of the PSN,” he said.
Reacting to the president’s speech, Awosika expressed appreciation to both PSN and the sponsor for the vote of confidence reposed in them.
“I want to specially thank the president for coming up with the integrity award for pharmacists because I believe this are his thinking. I know this is not something that Bio-Generics just picked from the roof.
“Nevertheless Bio-Generics has responded very well to the call to put Pharmacy where it belongs. Honour is synonymous with integrity and we, as men of honour, must show such level of integrity. This is because we are entrusted with people’s lives,” she said.
While showering accolades on the PSN president, the committee chairman declared that she had followed his progress so far and can confidently conclude that he is a detribalised Nigerian.
Addressing him directly, she said: “I have been fortunate to meet with so many presidents in the past; but you have achieved results. You are the kind of Nigerian that we want. A Nigerian who is predisposed to the North, East, South or West. That, he has been before now, and that, he will continue to be.
“On that platform of what had been laid, what is in you and what you want to give to Pharmacy and bequeath to Nigeria is service with integrity. I speak, I believe, on behalf of members of this committee, that we will do same to remain the men of honour that we are,” she said.
According to her, the present task before the Integrity Committee is a difficult one because members have to painstakingly determine the criteria that would allow for transparency and good judgment to be able to choose the best among hospital pharmacists.
Referring to the PSN president, she said: “This is coming at the time you will be exiting as president of this great society; thus we need to do a good job! Also, I look around the membership of the committee and saw both familiar and unfamiliar faces.
“But I can trust your judgment that everyone here is of great integrity. I also believe that as men of honour, we can join hands and bring out the pharmacists,” she stressed.
On the quality expected of the integrity award winner, Awosika disclosed that candidates could be interns, Grade 1 pharmacists or directors of pharmaceutical services.
“We don’t know who may eventually emerge as winner. This is why we will choose based on the criteria that we agree on; hence there will be equal opportunities for all pharmacists.
“Having said that, Mr President, I have an observation. We will like to use your office to tell the sponsor – Bio-Generics – that we do not want our work subjected to external audit,” she emphasized, noting that doing so would amount to not trusting the judgment of the committee.
“As men and women of honour, we intend to do our work to the benefit of pharmacists. It is not the duty of any external auditor to come and audit our work here.
“Meanwhile we will cooperate with our national integrity business partner because we want pharmacists out there to know that we are championing professional integrity,” she remarked.