The newly-elected President of the Pharmaceutical Society of Ghana (PSGH), Samuel Donkor, has appealed to government for some more attention geared at the creation of a pharmaceutical hub for the sub-region and the continent.
According to him, the sector’s potential is huge and a little more support from government would accelerate its growth and significantly increase its contribution to GDP.
Mr. Donkor told the B&FT in an interview that achievement of the pharmaceutical hub initiative would be fast realised if the attention given to the 1 District, 1 Factory (1D1F) initiative is replicated for the sector, as a pharmaceutical hub at Dawa in the Greater Accra Region is already on course.
“We are ready to support government to achieve its aim of making the nation a pharmaceutical hub in the sub-region and the continent. The AfCFTA has come at the right time, and the pharmaceutical sector is prepared to take advantage of it.
“We have an opportunity to manufacture and export to other African countries. Made in Ghana pharmaceutical products are of high standard and quality; this is well known on the continent.
“The Food and Drugs Authority subjects the sector to very high standards, and that has been of tremendous benefit. We need government to support the pharmaceutical park that the Ghana Chamber of pharmacy has put in place at Dawa,” he said.
“The Dawa industrial park needs to have the necessary incentives which will attract investors, and there should be some good funding that supports local investors to venture into the sector.
“Just like the support for the 1 District, 1 Factory (1D1F), we hope that same will be extended to the pharmaceutical park at Dawa,” he said.
The US$321million pharmaceutical park is to be developed within the Dawa Industrial Zone (DIZ) to serve as a one-stop shop for the processing and manufacturing of pharmaceutical products like drugs.
The 150-acre Pharma Park, the first in the country, is a collaboration between Ghana National Chamber of Pharmacy (GNCP) and Dawa City Limited – a subsidiary of LMI Holdings and manager of the DIZ.
Mr. Donkoh commended the Chamber of Pharmacy for a job well done, which has birthed the park; and said the Pharmaceutical Society of Ghana intends to partner the Chamber to ensure that many more companies interested in the sector will move into the area and set up their factories, packaging plants, support companies and others.
“The objective is to attain a situation where the total value of import of medicine moves from the current 70-80 percent to about 50-60 percent. Our desire is to reduce imports by 20 percent.
“This would give the manufacturing sector a boost to support GDP, decrease unemployment and reduce the pressure on foreign exchange. It would be a game-changer.”
The new PSGH President
Samuel Donkoh is a Registered Pharmacist with B.Pharm (Hons) degree from the Kwame Nkrumah University of Science and Technology, Kumasi, Ghana.
He also holds an Executive Master’s in business administration from the University of Ghana, Legon, and has attended several international courses on management programmes, including sales management and leadership.
He is an alumnus of Wits Business School (South Africa), having participated in Executive Management in Sales Management and Leadership. His areas of interest are: strategic management, excellent marketing planning and implementation, and corporate finance – particularly valuation of companies
Mr. Donkoh was the Regional Manager of the multinational, multibillion-dollar pharmaceutical company F. Hoffman La Roche Ltd. During his 10 years as a Regional Manager, he was responsible for the Southern African Region including countries like Namibia, Botswana, Zimbabwe, Zambia and Malawi.
He was also responsible for the English West Africa sub-region, made up of countries like Nigeria, Ghana, Liberia and Sierra Leone. Also, he has served on several committees of the Ministry of Health and the pharmaceutical sector
Mr. Donkoh is the immediate past President of the Pharmaceutical Importers and Wholesalers Association of Ghana (PIWA). He is also a current national executive council member of the Ghana National Chamber of Pharmacy (GNCoP).
Vision for PSGH
Mr. Donkoh has set out to execute four key priority areas to protect and promote the sector and its players.
These include putting in the necessary structures to enhance job creation and improve remuneration of pharmacist. Also, to attain the necessary support from government and players in the sector to help strengthen community pharmacy practice.
He aims to contribute his quota through the PSGH to make the nation’s pharmaceutical hub-dream a reality in the shortest possible time.
Finally, he hopes to strike the necessary partnerships and institute sound measures to make the PSGH financially sustainable.