UGANDA – Tests conducted by the Ugandan National Drug Authority (NDA) has confirmed that coffee imported from Malaysia under the L-Coffee brand has been adulterated with a sex booster drug called Tadalafil.
The remains of the consignment (around 70 boxes) have been confiscated, and the authorities together with other law enforcement agencies continue to investigate the matter to get hold of those accountable. The sachet of L-Coffee shows that it’s a blend of Arabica and Robusta coffee beans.
The importers of L-Power Coffee have been tasked to recall the product from the market, with the belief that there could have been samples of the product sneaking into Uganda.
“We hereby direct all drug shops, pharmacies, online shops, and supermarkets to stop with immediate effect selling, stocking, distributing, or dealing in L-Power Coffee. The public should remain vigilant and report any suspicious activity to NDA,” NDA communications officer Abiaz Rwamwiri said.
According to NDA, Tadalafil is used to treat male sexual function problems (impotence or erectile dysfunction-ED), which if abused, can lead to fatal complications.
“Tadalafil is a drug for erectile dysfunction which must be used under strict instructions by a qualified medical professional as it has serious side effects like respiratory and cardiac failure, urinary disorders, and sometimes leads to coma or death,” Rwamwiri explained.
The importation of adulterated coffee is not new in the country. In 2021, NDA also found a significant quantity of viagra in M-Magix Coffee being marketed in the country with the claim of keeping men strong.
Viagra is a drug containing Sidenafil active ingredients, a prescription-only medicine that’s approved to treat erectile dysfunction.
At the time, NDA said they detected the problem after some members of the public reported abnormal reactions after taking the M-Magix coffee.
Dr. Amoreen Naluyima, the manager of Medicine testing at NDA, said putting viagra in coffee could only be accepted if there was a clinical trial to support it, considering that Sidenafil citrate has serious side effects.
In 2018, the Uganda National Bureau of Standards (UNBS) said their surveillance report for 2017 and 2018 indicated that more than 54 percent of goods on the market are substandard or fake.
The agency has laboratories where food and other items that are imported into the country, are assessed for safety and other standard requirements.