Aretha Medical through its managing director Prophet Walter Magaya has been found guilty of contravening Section 41 of Medicines and Allied Substances Control Act. The company was accused of announcing that it has found a drug which cures HIV and AIDS called Aguma which the Prophetic Healing and Deliverance Ministries leader publicly announced without following proper health etiquette.
The company will have to pay a fine of $700 by Friday this week.
In the court of law, Prophet Magaya pleaded guilty to contravening the Medicines Control Act but maintained that their drug is indeed authentic. He told the court that the drug went through laboratory tests in India and was approved.
Through his lawyer Mr Everson Chatambudza, Magaya produced documents from India supporting his claims.
He conceded that he had erred by promoting the drug before the Ministry of Health and Child Care had responded to his letter in which he was informing them of the drug discovery and seeking guidance.
Magaya also tendered to the court a letter he wrote to the Minister of Health and Child Care as well as the ministry’s permanent secretary before he made an announcement of the drug.
He said he did not get a response from the Ministry.
“There was an attempt on part of the accused to comply with the law. Three days before announcement he wrote to the Ministry and notified them of the discovery and about his intention to announce of his discovery a clear indication he was seeking guidance, unfortunately he did not get any response.
“The case is a technical fact whereby the accused only skipped the protocols otherwise the word that there is a discovery still stands,” Mr Chatambudza said.
In the court’s ruling, Magistrate Rumbidzai Mugwagwa said what Prophet Magaya did was a serious offence as this could have caused hundreds of people to abandon their ARV drugs, thereby threatening many lives.
She ordered Prophet Magaya to pay the $700 fine not later than Friday, February 8.
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