Speakers and Presiding Officers from the Commonwealth have visited the CIPLA Quality Chemicals Industries Ltd (CIPLA QCIL) in Luzira, a Kampala suburb, where they were amazed at the factory’s capacity to produce essential medicines that African countries largely import from abroad.
The CIPLA QCIL plant is one of the four pharmaceutical manufacturers in Africa accredited by the World Health Organisation to manufacture anti-retroviral drugs, anti-malarial drugs among others.
The delegation led by Deputy Speaker, Thomas Tayebwa, toured the factory on Friday, 05 January 2024 and commended the Ugandan government for coming up with such a factory with medicines that are tailored to solve African problems.
“This is an eye opener to us that we can solve African problems using African solutions, we are very proud of Uganda” said Rt Hon. Ackson Tulia, Speaker, Parliament of Tanzania.
Tulia said she was sure her counterparts from other African countries will spread the ‘gospel’ on the work being done at CIPLA Quality chemicals, to other nations saying “the continent is ready to accommodate products from a fellow African nation”.
She was, however, concerned that the company supplies medicines to only 15 countries, moreover in Africa and urged government to consider the western market.
“I believe that Africa can also offer solutions to the rest of the world, we would like to see you cross the borders,” Tulia said.
The visiting Speakers, Tayebwa said, have the ability to influence their countries to consider importing from Uganda medicines such as Anti-retroviral drugs, anti-malarial drugs, and medicines to treat diabetes which are currently manufactured at CIPLA QCIL.
“These are the Speakers who preside over national budgets in their countries, they do oversight on how government is doing its work. We are urging them that from here they should go to their governments and ensure that medicines produced here should not be procured from Europe or Asia,” Tayebwa said.
Tayebwa remarked that some Speakers confessed that some of the companies from where their governments procure such essential medicines are not half of CIPLA QCIL in capacity.
He commended the company which he said was now both a national and continental pride.
“These are the people who saved countries like South Africa during the COVID-19 pandemic when Europe and America could not export to Africa, they stepped in and saved Africa. This plant is no longer about quality chemicals, it is a national and continental pride,” Tayebwa said.
The Chairman for CIPLA QCIL, Emmanuel Katongole, hailed Parliament for considering the plant for the Speakers’ visit, saying the company is able and ready to expand their export market.
Distributed by APO Group on behalf of Parliament of the Republic of Uganda.