A massive police investigation is underway in The Gambia following the death of 66 children that has been linked to four brands of imported Indian cough syrup.
The World Health Organisation (WHO) have also issued a global alert over four cough syrups, warning they could be linked to acute kidney injuries and the children’s deaths in July, August and September.
Senior officials from the Medicine Control Agency and the importers have been called for questioning from the office of President Adama Barrow vowing to “leave no stone unturned” in the investigation.
The products – Promethazine Oral Solution, Kofexmalin Baby Cough Syrup, Makoff Baby Cough Syrup and Magrip N Cold Syrup – were manufactured by an Indian company, Maiden Pharmaceuticals, which had failed to provide guarantees about their safety, the WHO said.
The Indian government is also investigating the situation as the manufacturers said in a statement said it was shocked and saddened over the incident. The company said it followed Indian health protocols and was co-operating with an investigation.
Gambian health officials and Red Cross workers are now going door to door, as well as to pharmacies and markets, searching for the syrups and destroying them.