EPA orders immediate withdrawal of pesticides products

BY: Lydia Kukua Asamoah, GNA

The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), has with immediate effect cancelled the registrations and ordered the withdrawal of all pesticides products that contain Aluminium Phosphide, due to their misapplication in the country.

The EPA said such pesticides products, containing Aluminium Phosphide as active ingredient, were being recklessly misused and misapplied for control of household pests, which was in contravention to the conditions of registration.

The products being asked to be withdrawn from the market were Bextoxin, Phostoxin T, Raintoxin 57tb, Topstoxin, Agroxin Tablet, Dastoxion T and Grain-Mate, belonging to companies located mainly in Kumasi and Accra.

An official document to the importers and copied to the Minister of Environment, Science, Technology and Innovation, Minister of Food and Agriculture and the Chairman of the EPA Governing Board has indicated.

The move the Ghana News Agency (GNA) has learnt was part of measures being taken by EPA to protect the citizenry from the misuse and harmful effect of the products.

The GNA got the information as part of a follow up on the case of the alleged misapplication of Topstoxin, a product known to contain Aluminium Phosphide, which hospital authorities at the 37 Military Hospital confirmed caused the death of twin babies at Nima in Accra, after their parents bought and sprayed the product in their room to repel insects in their home.

In the incident that occurred in April this year, the parents of the deceased twins indicated that they bought the product in a van on the open market.

The EPA document, which was distributed to companies that had the product registration, had noted that: “Your product containing Aluminium phosphide as active ingredient has been registered for restricted use in Ghana and this means that only companies and persons with the requisite training and expertise are qualified to sell and apply the product in accordance with the label instructions”.

The document noted that the companies had grossly violated the conditions concerning the sale of the products and as a result, the products were found in the open market as a general use pesticide.

The Companies are therefore being directed to withdraw all stocks of the product from the market with immediate effect and to submit records of all products imported, withdrawn from the market as well as those in storage to the EPA by May 31, 2018.