– Renews commitment to association’s programmes’ success
President-elect of the Nigerian Association of Pharmacists and Pharmaceutical Scientists in the Americas (NAPPSA), Dr Kunle Tometi, has reiterated his commitment to strengthening the association’s membership, while ensuring that all the plans and programmes of its current leadership are successfully executed.
Speaking in an exclusive interview with Pharmanewsonline at the recently concluded conference of NAPPSA in Columbus, Ohio, USA, where he was elected, Tometi said it was imperative to expand the membership base of the association, while fostering stronger and better relationships, especially with members of allied professions in the health sector.
He expressed his desire to see Nigerian-made pharmaceuticals sold around the world, especially in America. He also suggested that NAPPSA conferences be held in Canada and other places, where there had been low interest in the association’s activities. This, he said, will help to boost membership and ensure greater inclusivity.
Below is the full interview:
Congratulations on your election. As the president-elect, what have you to offer to NAPPSA these two years before you fully take over?
Thank you very much for this opportunity. Ideally, in the next two years, I am supposed to support the programmes and ideas of our leadership – that is, my president – and help execute his plans. Having said that, I think I will be very influential in advising him on the direction we will be going.
We need to develop relationships, both local and international, and expand our membership base. We need to go for our Nigerian pharmacists and pharmaceutical scientists all around America and bring everybody in. More importantly, we need to have partnership with the PSN and promote inter-professional relationships with the physicians, nurses and other healthcare professionals.
We also have to increase our interest in pharmaceutical sciences. There will be more involvement with Nigerian pharmaceutical manufacturers. It will be a great pleasure to see products from companies like Fidson, Emzor and the like being marketed in America.
As you must have observed, some NAPPSA members spent only two days at the conference before dashing off to Australia to attend the FIP conference because the dates overlapped. How can this be prevented in the future?
That is something I will take into consideration and discuss with the leadership as we move forward. Now that NAPPSA is a member of FIP, this is a subject that must be looked into. We should be able to discuss the timing of our conferences so that there will be no conflicts. This arrangement will definitely strengthen both organisations.
Apart from Osak Uwubanmwem, there seems to be no other person from Canada showing interest in NAPPSA. In fact, according to Sir Atueyi, he had to personally encourage Prof. Isa Odidi to be one keynote speaker at one of the previous conferences. Is there a way you can improve relationship with Nigerian pharmacists in Canada?
Yes, there are ways we can do that. We all have colleagues and classmates that live across the border. We can talk to them one on one to influence them to participate. One of the things we have done very well at NAPPSA for the past 17 years is to move our conferences from city to city. Most of the time, it is even in a city where we don’t have an association of Nigerian pharmacists or where there is no aggregation of Nigerian pharmaceutical scientists working together.
A case in point is the next conference, holding in San Antonio, Texas. We don’t have a local affiliation over there but because we are going there, we are going to get all our people to go there. We will go there and start finding our people to bring them under the umbrella of NAPPSA.
So, my suggestion is that we need to schedule a NAPPSA conference in Canada. This way, we can get our Canadian folks to be involved.