Pakwach Resident District Commissioner, Paul Eseru has suspended the sale, distribution, and consumption of non-certified alcoholic drinks.
His directive comes just a few days after the death of at least 12 people in Arua city and Madi-Okollo district who succumbed after allegedly consuming a non-certified locally made alcohol drink called City 5 gin. More than 18 others are recovering from Arua Regional Referral hospital after consuming the pineapple-flavored gin.
Eseru explains that some of the alcoholic drinks that are not certified by the Uganda National Bureau of Standards (UNBS) have been suspected to contain certain intoxicants that are very lethal and harmful to humans.
In a letter addressed to the community of Pakwach district dated 22 August 2022, Eseru cautioned that any person found violating the suspension does it at his or her own risk.
“The community of Pakwach is therefore directed not to consume nor distribute any non-certified alcoholic drinks or beverages. Anybody found violating this warning will be doing it at his or her own peril. Expect no further warning”, reads part of the letter.
The LCV chairperson Pakwach Robert Omito says uncertified alcoholic drinks are widely spread in the district and continue to be a health concern to both the elderly and the youth because they are often sold cheaply which makes them more affordable to the locals.
So far, two manufacturing plants of uncertified local alcoholic waragi in Arua city have been closed by police and officials of the Uganda National Bureau of Standards (UNBS) following the recent deaths.
Meanwhile, four people are in police custody at Arua Central Police Station in connection to the deaths as investigations continue into the matter.