The management of university of Jos(UNIJOS) has reportedly approved the use of herbal tea for the treatment of COVID-19.
The institution’s senate gave the approval during its fourth special meeting for the 2019/2020 academic session.
The approval was contained in a statement signed by the Registrar of the University, Monday M. Danjem and made available to Journalists.
The university senate urged the public to kindly patronize the herbal tea produced by by the UNIJOS Africa Centre of Excellence in Phytomedicine Research and Development.
In the statement, Danjem said; “Senate was informed that the University of Jos Centre for Excellence in Phytomedicine has produced a home-made herbal tea for the prevention of COVID-19, and it is sold at an affordable price.”
“Senate directed that the information should be disseminated to all staff in the University Community for patronage of the herbal tea,”he added.
The National Agency for Food and Drug Administration and Control (NAFDAC) on Friday however noted that it’s authority is not aware of the drug approval and has not yet carried out any research on the herbal drug. The Director-General of NAFDAC, Professor Mojisola Adeyeye disclosed the notice.
Disclaiming the notice, Simeon Omale, a pharmacologist who is one of the lead researchers, had confirmed that the centre already has a pre-conditional approval, but not a final approval from NAFDAC.
He disclosed that the research that NAFDAC needs to ascertain the safety of the product has already been completed by the research team and the safety of the drug is not in question.
Omale said; “We have done the safety profile and it is very safe.”
“We have done some reasonable research on it. We have done the safety profile; we claimed anti-inflammatory, we claimed anti-oxidant, we claimed anti-COVID. We have checked the active ingredients of the herbal tea against SARS-COV-2, which is the virus that causes COVID-19, and it has very good interaction with the virus.”
“Using the fruit flies being used for drug discovery in the modern world, we tested for the anti-inflammatory that we reported there, and we have also checked it for anti-malaria. So, those basic experiments have been done.”
He argued that herbal medicine is not like orthodox drugs that are usually subjected to various stages of clinical trials, adding that the urgent nature of the covid-19 pandemic and the assurance of researches conducted so far made them certify the tea for human use.
“If you have gotten some evidence, there is an accelerated kind of approval.”
“Herbal medicine is not like the normal orthodox drugs that you go through various stages of clinical trials. For herbal medicine, as long as people are taking it and it is safe, NAFDAC will just do a little profile to check how safe it is and they give you number.”
“We have done the research that NAFDAC needs to ascertain the safety of the product; that is the document we are going to present to them on Monday,” he explained.