Glaxo Smikline GSK Shut Down of Operations in Nigeria: Triumph of Impunity of Fair Process

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By: Douglas Ogbankwa Esq. @[email protected]

Finally, after several months of intense intrigues by Glaxco Smikline (GSK) UK, Glaxco Smikline Consumer Nigeria has ceased all operations in Nigeria. This is a sad story of neo-colonial manipulation of Nigeria’s Regulatory System for profit, without considering the impact on poor Nigerians who may be unable to afford GSK Drugs and Vaccines due to their new business model.

On August 3rd, 2023, GSK Nigeria sent a letter to the Nigerian Exchange (NGX) signed by their Company Secretary, Frederick Ichekwai. The letter stated that they would no longer be operating in Nigeria due to vague and unspecified reasons.

Today is sad for the Nigerian business community as hundreds of workers will lose their jobs due to the closure of GSK’s operations in Nigeria. Despite numerous efforts to prevent this regrettable action, the company has chosen to prioritise cost-cutting measures over the well-being of its employees. This decision also raises concerns about Nigeria becoming a dumping ground for GSK’s imported drugs, an unfair trade practice that should not be allowed in a country where regulators are expected to act responsibly.

Should the Nigerian Government allow this to happen, many Nigerians will not be able to afford the unique drugs and vaccines of GSK, which are for terminal ailments and life-threatening diseases, respectively.

This shutdown of GSK activities in Nigeria will also be a dangerous precedent for other multinationals, which can follow the same model, knowing that Nigerian Regulatory Authorities are indifferent to such unfair trade practices.

GSK Nigeria’s assertion that their closure is mainly due to Forex pressure is false and laughable as the current Forex regime is one of Forex liberalisation, pushed by the Forex Deregulation Policy of the President Bola Ahmed Tinubu Government.

We call on President Bola Ahmed Tinubu to investigate this issue and contact the Authorities of GSK Nigeria, controlled by GSK UK, to save the lives of poor Nigerians and Nigerian Jobs. GSK UK has used the same business operations closure model in many African Countries. Still, their attempt to do the same in China was met with stiff opposition from the Chinese Authorities and a considerable fine.

Nigeria as the giant of Africa must show leadership in this issue by stemming the impunity of GSK UK in its activities in Nigeria, as this will be a wedge to further investment shenanigans by some of these multinationals.

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