THE Zambia Medicines Regulatory Authority (ZAMRA) has intercepted and destroyed 10,000 doses of a suspected COVID-19 vaccine imported into the country without authorization.
On July, 2 this year, the vaccine labelled as Hayat Vax [SARS-COV-2 Vaccine] (Vero Cell) inactivated, with batch number HV0025, was brought into the country by an importer named Chrismar Earthmoving Equipment.
In a media statement, ZAMRA said it seized the consignment which was worth USD150, 000 was seized at Kenneth Kaunda International Airport in conjunction with the Zambia Revenue Authority.
The authority said the named vaccine is unauthorized for use on the Zambian market as it is not registered by ZAMRA.
“In addition, the vaccine is not under the World Health Organization Emergency Use Listing. The WHO EUL procedure is one of the regulatory reliance mechanisms which ZAMRA utilizes, like other national regulatory authorities in other jurisdictions, to consider COVID 19 vaccines for national use.
According to the documentation (Invoice) which was furnished to ZAMRA, the purported manufacturer of Hayat Vax vaccine is Gulf Pharmaceutical Industries while the selling entity is G42 Medications Trading LLC of the United Arab Emirates,” reads the statement.
ZAMRA said the action carried out was to ensure that the Zambian population is protected from the risk of using the unauthorized vaccine whose quality, safety and effectiveness was not guaranteed.
The Authority has further urged members of the public who intend to import COVID19 vaccines, including other medicines and allied substances to ensure that the right processes and procedures are followed in accordance with the Medicines and Allied Substances to avoid stringent regulatory and legal action.