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John Mututho says Banning alcohol will kill more people than Covid-19

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The former chairman of the National Authority for the Campaign Against Alcohol and Drug Abuse (NACADA) John Mututho on Wednesday warned that the move by government to limit alcoholic drinks to homes may lead to the death of addicts.

Former Naivasha MP argued that the ban might lead to more deaths compared to Covid-19, which has so far claimed 260 as of Wednesday.




PROPOSED RULES

“It is a fact that liquor has killed many and destroyed families, but the current proposal to ban its sale will lead to high mortality among the addicts,” Mututho warned.

He also said that proposal by the Ministry of Health to ban the consumption of alcohol inside bars and entertainment zones would dent NACADA’s effort to fight consumption of illicit brews.




Mututho’s sentiments come after the Ministry of Health initiated the process of banning the sale of alcohol to sit-in customers in business establishments as a measure to curb rising Covid-19 cases.

He wondered how the government will control the more than eight million addicts who cannot do without their daily dose of the substances.

“How will you control them? By way of gazzete notice?” Mututho posed while urging those in charge at the Ministry of Health to consult NACADA despite there being bad blood.




PUNITIVE MEASURES

The ban, which currently is at the consultation stage, will affect restaurants, eateries, bars, food courts, entertainment joints, supermarkets, liquor shops and any other business establishment.

The proposed Covid-19 Sale of Alcoholic Drinks Rules 2020, provide that businesses, where alcohol is sold, will operate between 9am-7:30pm.

“A person who commits an offence under these rules shall, on conviction, be liable to a fine not exceeding Sh20,000 or to imprisonment for a period not exceeding six months or both,” reads part of the Public Health Act statement.

Kenya has recorded an upsurge in the daily number of confirmed Covid-19 cases since the government relaxed the containment measures.

DIVIDED OPINION

The proposed rules on ban the sale of alcohol has however been opposed by restaurant operators and leading manufacturers and distributors of alcoholic beverages, who have termed the proposal punitive.




“Few isolated incidents that have breached the law are a small percentage. They should not be a collective punishment to all eateries and restaurants,” Pub entertainment and restaurants association (PERAK) national chairman Alice Opee said on Wednesday.

As of Wednesday, Kenya had recorded 14,805 cases of the new coronavirus after 637 people tested positive between Tuesday and Wednesday.

According to a national survey conducted by NACADA in 2017, alcohol was cited as the most used substance of abuse with 12.2 per cent of persons aged 15 – 65 being active consumers.

Alcohol use also contributes to the highest burden of substance use disorders with 10.4 per cent of the population aged between 15 and 65 years being addicted to it. It added that four out of every 100 people lose their lives in Kenya as a result of alcohol abuse.

Source : Nairobi News

CORONAVIRUS CASES

Live Updates COVID-19 CASES
  • World 18,699,432
    World
    Confirmed: 18,699,432
    Active: 6,080,320
    Recovered: 11,914,788
    Death: 704,324
  • USA 4,918,420
    USA
    Confirmed: 4,918,420
    Active: 2,276,450
    Recovered: 2,481,680
    Death: 160,290
  • South Africa 521,318
    South Africa
    Confirmed: 521,318
    Active: 148,683
    Recovered: 363,751
    Death: 8,884
  • Nigeria 44,433
    Nigeria
    Confirmed: 44,433
    Active: 11,672
    Recovered: 31,851
    Death: 910
  • Kenya 23,202
    Kenya
    Confirmed: 23,202
    Active: 13,487
    Recovered: 9,327
    Death: 388
  • Australia 18,730
    Australia
    Confirmed: 18,730
    Active: 7,876
    Recovered: 10,622
    Death: 232
  • South Sudan 2,437
    South Sudan
    Confirmed: 2,437
    Active: 1,215
    Recovered: 1,175
    Death: 47
  • Uganda 1,203
    Uganda
    Confirmed: 1,203
    Active: 125
    Recovered: 1,073
    Death: 5
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