Adigwe wins Nigeria's Highest Productivity Award


Dr. Obi Peter Adigwe, Director-General, National Institute for Pharmaceutical Research and Development (NIPRD) has beaten thousands of contenders to emerge the first prominent healthcare chief executive to clinch the highly coveted Productivity Awards for the 2019/2020 session.

Officials at the Ministry of Labour and Productivity indicate that Dr. Adigwe emerged tops following a vigorous evidence-based selection process that reviewed hard-work, excellence, innovation and productivity output from 2017 to 2020.

Barring any last minute changes, sources indicate that Mr. President would personally confer the award on Thursday,  May 12, at the Aso Rock Presidential Villa.

Adigwe is being conferred with the National Productivity Order Of Merit (NPOM) Award by the President of the Federal Republic of Nigería, Muhammadu Buhari, in recognition of his high productivity.

It would be recalled that in 2017 and 2018, Adigwe had as Executive Secretary of Pharmaceutical Manufacturers Group of Manufacturers Association of Nigeria (PMG-MAN) led advocacy efforts to reverse the insidious Common External Tariff (CET), which threatened the entire Pharma Industry. 

Along with Dr. S. Okey Akpa, the President of the West African Pharma Manufacturers Association, he conceptualised the Medicines Security Concept, which laid the foundation for drug and vaccines manufacturing initiatives that have taken centre stage today following the COVID-19 Pandemic.

Earlier, he had made his mark by designing and implementing the robust and comprehensive advocacy plan that led to the ring fencing of local manufacture for several main categories of medicines in the 2016 National Fiscal Policy.

Analysis shows that this landmark intervention led to double digit sectoral growth in the indicated areas, as well as inflow of millions of dollars of new investment, and the creation of thousands of direct and indirect jobs in the sector.

During the COVID-19 pandemic, Adigwe’s maverick performance as Director General of the National Institute for Pharmaceutical Research and Development (NIPRD) led to Nigeria’s emergence as a leading scientific authority in evidence-based policymaking.

Notably, he led the team that provided the first international categorical analysis on the COVID organics preparation which then underpinned decision making that saved countless lives and conserved millions of dollars. 

Adigwe also convened the first National Scientific Advisory Committee (NSAC) for verification and validation of phyto claims. The output from the team of close to two dozen erudite and eminent Professors is now open sourced and underpins international objective analysis in the sector.

Stakeholders have lauded the recognition of this maverick Director General, especially since he was appointed barely three years ago following a merit driven recruitment process. Scientists and Academics further posit that Adigwe’s performance is evidence that Nigeria should focus on meritocracy in the selection of Agency Heads and Chief Executives so as to ensure the emergence of round holes in round pegs, which is critical to National Productivity and Development.

 Whilst a chronological analysis suggests that Adigwe appears to be the highest Public Service Health Chief Executive to clinch this coveted award, other notable Nigerians who have previously clinched this highly coveted award include Aliko Dangote and Tony Elumelu of Dangote Industries and the TEF Foundation, respectively.


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