The Gambian government has offered families of children who died from acute kidney failure $20,000 each. The compensation was turned down because the families are still looking for closure and justice.
The government declared that flood waters were to blame for the victims’ deaths. For the past month, the small West African nation of Gambia has been plagued by one of Africa’s most heinous incidents.
Earlier in October, reports circulated that small children were dying from acute kidney failure. Following an investigation, the World Health Organization discovered that their deaths were caused by faulty cough syrups from India; however, this report has been called into question.
The country’s Medicines Control Agency stated that the cause of death was not related to the drugs, thereby absolving Maiden Pharma (the pharmaceutical company that manufactures the drugs) of any responsibility.
The country’s gender ministry recently offered $20,000 to the victims’ families, which was rejected. The ministry intended for the $20,000 to be divided among the victims’ 70 families, a little less than $300 per family.
This compensation has been labeled as an insult to the victims and has been categorically rejected. The chairperson of the grieving families, Ebrima Sanyang, stated that accepting the money would jeopardize their position in seeking justice.
He disclosed that the families were more concerned about getting some closure than a measly sum as compensation. The Gambian Medicines Control Agency had declared that the kids died from flood waters as opposed to the World Health Organization’s reports that stated that the deaths were caused by defective drugs. Ebrima Sanyang stated that the families of the victims want the Medicine control agency to withdraw their claim. They also want the agency to be barred from investigations.
In October the WHO issued an alert against the four products that are linked to the case, they include Promethazine Oral Solution, Kofexmalin Baby Cough Syrup, Makoff Baby Cough Syrup, and Magrip N Cold Syrup, all made by Maiden Pharma, and all decidedly containing “unacceptable” amounts of diethylene glycol and ethylene glycol, which can be toxic and lead to acute kidney injury.
Maiden Pharma has stated that they adhere to standard procedures, and the manufacture of their products follows regulations.
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