Following the dispute generated by the N1bn fine imposed on Guinness Nigeria Plc by the National Agency for Food and Drug Administration and Control (NAFDAC), both parties have decided to have an out of court settlement to resolve the dispute.
The fine was imposed on Guinness as administrative charges for various clandestine violations of NAFDAC rules, regulations and enactments over a long period of time.
In respect to this, Guinness approached the Lagos State High Court sitting in Igbisere asking it to restrain NAFDAC and the attorney-general of the federation from enforcing the sanction pending the determination of the suit.
In a letter addressed to the managing director of Guinness Nigeria Plc, Peter Ndegwa, by the head, investigation and enforcement of NAFDAC, Kingsley Ejiofor, the regulatory agency had requested for the payment of the N1bn as administrative charges for infractions such as the disruption of activities carried out by the company without the authorisation and supervision of the agency.
The agency also accused Guinness of revalidating expired products without authorisation and supervision by NAFDAC, as well as failing to secure the gate of its warehouse as the raw materials used in the production of beer and non-alcoholic beverages by the firm were permanently opened to intrusion and exposure to the elements and rodents, which “invariably affect the integrity of the raw materials. Also alleged to have maintained poor documentation record and failed to comply with conditions contained in the certificate of validation of the revalidated malt extract, which required the storage of the items in cool and dry place and elimination of exposure to sunlight.