Philip Anokye, the Chief Executive Officer of Achievers Pharmacy, a pharmacy in Obuasi, Ghana, has accused the Pharmacy Council of Ghana of unlawfully shutting down his shop.
The shop, which has been operating since 2018, provides pharmaceutical and laboratory services and employs over 20 staff members. Anokye claims that he has fulfilled all the requirements of the Pharmacy Council to renew his license and is puzzled as to why the council has closed down his shop.
According to the Ghana Pharmaceutical Council, pharmacy licenses must be renewed annually, and operating without a valid license is an offense that can result in sanctions. Anokye explains that they initially faced challenges in renewing their license due to the absence of the pharmacist who had assisted them in the past. However, they eventually found another pharmacist who helped them complete the registration process at the regional office of the Pharmaceutical Council, and the registration was approved by the council’s director.
Anokye states that he was later asked to pay a penalty of GHS 3500 for late registration, which he accepted but requested some time to make the payment. This request was approved, and Anokye signed an undertaking to that effect. However, on May 2, 2023, a representative from the Regional Pharmaceutical Council, Mr. Amoh, came to close down the shop without providing any official notification. Despite resistance from Anokye and his staff, the shop was eventually closed down with the assistance of the police.
Anokye explains that he petitioned the Obuasi Municipal Police commander, who scheduled a meeting between him and a team from the National Pharmaceutical Council in Accra. However, after assessing the situation, the police commander found no basis for closing down the shop and recommended an amicable settlement. Despite this recommendation, the team from Accra proceeded to close down the shop.
Anokye further states that he approached the Regional office of the council to seek clemency but was unsuccessful. The Regional Director, Benjamin Botwe, allegedly dismissed them from his office. As a next step, Anokye and the board of directors of Achievers Pharmacy plan to write to the Pharmaceutical Council through their lawyers to explain the basis for the shop’s closure and request its reopening.
Anokye expresses concern about the closure of the shop, as it affects the livelihoods of over 20 staff members. He believes that frustrating legitimate businesses like his goes against promoting private investment in the country.