GSK UK Group has made it known to GlaxoSmithKline Consumer Nigeria PLC of its plans to discontinue services of its prescription medicines and vaccines in Nigeria.
Nairametrics reported that, the company made this announcement via an official statement signed by Company Secretary, Frederick Ichekwai which was sent to the Nigeria Exchange Limited (NGX).
According to its unaudited HY 2023 financial statement, the company noted that it would appoint a local third-party distributor in Nigeria for the supply of its consumer healthcare products.
Recall that the company had noted that challenges with accessing forex were disrupting the availability of drugs in Nigeria.
GSK noted that they were doing all they can to “limit the period of time the market will be out-of-stock on our products” as it was a priority for patient to get access to their medicines and vaccines.
The company said they were actively engaging with all stakeholders to find a solution to enable sustainable supply of GSK medicines and vaccines to patients in Nigeria.
In an earlier report made by Business day, shareholders of the company had called on the board and federal government to save the company from the brink of collapse.
Moses Igbrude, national coordinator, Independent Shareholders Association of Nigeria (ISAN) expressed concerns on the situation saying,
- “I fear that there is a rumor going on that GSK is closing down our production manufacturing here (in Nigeria) and then transmitting it to a Distributor and that we would only be importing the drugs into this country,”
- “We have read what happened in Kenya and we are worried. GSK Nigeria has been a good citizen and a good neighbour and we are all together as shareholders, we have been part of it.”
What the company is saying
In the statement sent to Nigeria Exchange Limited on 3rd August 2023, the company emphasized that all necessary legal proceedings would be met as regards employees and shareholders:
- “Today we are briefing our employees whom we will treat fairly, respectfully and with care, meeting all applicable legal and consultation requirements.”
- “The Board is conscious that shareholders will have many questions; we have been working assiduously with our professional advisors to agree on next steps and we will be shortly submitting to the Securities and Exchange Commission (“SEC”) a draft Scheme of Arrangement which may, if approved, see shareholders other than GSK UK, receive an accelerated cash distribution and return of capital.”