The Presidential Advisory Committee for the Elimination of Drug Abuse has recommended cutting out adverts for recreational drugs like alcohol to discourage its use.
The Committee’s Chairman, Brig. Gen. Buba Marwa, revealed this on Monday while being interviewed on Sunrise Daily over the country’s drug abuse problem.
“You really can’t say zero-alcohol because people have the rights,” he said. “But when you consume more than is required and perhaps you are caught driving drunk, you know there is a penalty. So these penalties also have to be enforced.”
Roshni Korati, the deputy commissioner of the neighbouring Jorhat district, told AFP that the death toll in the district had reached 58.
At least 160 people were undergoing treatment at local hospitals and “16 of them are critical”, Korati added.
Police said people started falling sick after consuming a batch of illegally produced liquor late Thursday.
The victims, who include many women, worked at local tea estates in the region.
Doctors said those rushed to hospital in a critical condition were suffering from severe vomiting, extreme chest pain and breathlessness.
“A total of ten people have been arrested. We have sent the samples of the liquor… to a forensic laboratory. The report is awaited,” Mukesh Agarwala, additional director general of state police, told AFP on Sunday.
Assam Chief Minister Sarbananda Sonowal has ordered an inquiry into the deaths.
Apart from the arrests, two excise department officials were suspended for failing to take adequate precautions over the sale of the alcohol.
Assam health minister Himanta Biswa Sarma vowed those responsible for the tainted liquor would be brought to justice.
Hundreds of mainly poor people die each year in India from tainted liquor, which normally costs just a few US cents a bottle.
Cheap, locally made booze is common in rural parts and bootleggers often add methanol — a highly toxic form of alcohol sometimes used as an antifreeze — to their product to increase its strength.
If ingested in large quantities, methanol can cause blindness, liver damage and death.
Many drinkers in Uttar Pradesh and Uttarakhand were taken to hospital earlier this month in writhing pain after drinking illicit alcohol.
About 100 people died after consuming the tainted moonshine.
In 2015, more than 100 people died in a Mumbai slum after drinking illegal liquor.
Of the estimated five billion litres of alcohol drunk every year in India, around 40 percent is illegally produced, according to the International Spirits and Wine Association of India.
Many Indian states have implemented or pushed for prohibition, which, according to critics, further increases the unsupervised manufacture and sale of alcohol.
Bihar, one of India’s poorest states, banned alcohol in 2016. But just months after prohibition took effect, 16 people died after consuming toxic liquor.
The entire staff of a local police station in the eastern state were suspended for “dereliction of duty” and failure to stop bootlegging.
At least 99 people have died and scores have been hospitalised in northern India after drinking toxic alcohol, triggering a crackdown against bootleggers, officials said Monday.
News of the deaths in the states of Uttar Pradesh and Uttarakhand has trickled in over the past three days, with police suspecting the moonshine had been cut with methanol.
Cheap, locally-made liquor is common in parts of rural India and bootleggers often add methanol — a highly toxic form of alcohol sometimes used as an anti-freeze — to their product to increase its strength.
If ingested in large quantities, methanol can cause blindness, liver damage and death.
In one district of Uttar Pradesh, 59 people had died after consuming toxic alcohol, police spokesman Shailendra Kumar Sharma told AFP.
Alcohol kills three million people worldwide each year — more than AIDS, violence and road accidents combined, the World Health Organization said Friday, adding that men are particularly at risk.
The UN health agency’s latest report on alcohol and health pointed out that alcohol causes more than one in 20 deaths globally each year, including drink driving, alcohol-induced violence and abuse and a multitude of diseases and disorders.
Men account for more than three quarters of alcohol-related deaths, the nearly 500-page report found.
“Far too many people, their families and communities suffer the consequences of the harmful use of alcohol through violence, injuries, mental health problems and diseases like cancer and stroke,” WHO chief Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus said in a statement.
“It’s time to step up action to prevent this serious threat to the development of healthy societies,” he added.
Drinking is linked to more than 200 health conditions, including liver cirrhosis and some cancers.
Alcohol abuse also makes people more susceptible to infectious diseases such as tuberculosis, HIV and pneumonia, the report found.
The some three million alcohol-related deaths registered globally in 2016 — the latest available statistics — account for 5.3 percent of all deaths that year.
In comparison, HIV/AIDS was responsible for 1.8 percent of global deaths that year, road injuries for 2.5 percent and violence for 0.8 percent, the study showed.
The latest numbers are lower than those in WHO’s last report on global alcohol consumption, published in 2014.
There are “some positive global trends”, the agency said, pointing to shrinking prevalence of heavy episodic drinking and of alcohol-related deaths since 2010.
But it warned that “the overall burden of disease and injuries caused by the harmful use of alcohol is unacceptably high,” especially in Europe and the Americas.
Globally, an estimated 237 million men and 46 million women suffer from alcohol use disorders, WHO said.
Alcohol abuse affects nearly 15 percent of men and 3.5 percent of women in Europe, and 11.5 percent of men and 5.1 percent of women in the Americas, it pointed out.
Alcohol consumption overall is unevenly distributed around the globe, with well over half of the world’s population over the age of 15 abstaining completely.
A beer per day
On average, the 2.3 billion people currently considered drinkers — meaning they have drunk alcohol at least once in the past year — consume 33 grammes of pure alcohol per day.
That is roughly equivalent to two glasses of wine, a large bottle of beer or two shots of spirits.
Europe clearly has the highest per capita consumption, which despite a more than 10-percent drop since 2010 still registered a per capita consumption of 10 litres of pure alcohol or more per year.
WHO warned that alcohol consumption is also on the rise in all regions besides Europe, especially in Asia, with China and India registering significant hikes.
The UN health agency urged countries to do more to counter harmful drinking practices and to reach a goal of cutting global consumption by 10 percent between 2010 and 2025.
“We would like to see Member States implement creative solutions that will save lives, such as taxing alcohol and restricting advertising,” Tedros said
UEFA’s executive committee has ended an alcohol ban in stadiums on Champions League and Europa League matchdays, a move which supporter associations queued up to welcome Tuesday.
The governing body of the European game amended its safety and security regulations to permit alcohol distribution in competitions it runs, albeit “within the limits permitted under national and local law”.
That means alcoholic beverages can be sold in countries where local regulations allow their sale at sporting venues, such as Germany, although notably not England and France.
Ronan Evain, CEO of Football Supporters Europe, a group bringing together fans from some 40 countries, welcomed the move.
“For a long time football supporters have felt unfairly treated compared with fans of other sports like rugby, to say the least.
“It is not the sport you follow that makes you behave better or worse,” Evain said in a statement.
The Federal Government will today begin the implementation of the new excise duties for alcohol and tobacco.
President Muhammadu Buhari had in March assented to an increase in excise duties for tobacco, beer, wine, and spirits imported permitting a grace period of 90 days for implementation.
This follows after the Minister of Finance, Kemi Adeosun wrote to President Buhari to seek approval of the excise review.
The Minister stated that Adeosun noted that the reviews would be from 2018 to 2020 in order to reduce an expected negative impact on the sector.
According to her, the health hazards associated with tobacco-related diseases and alcohol abuse will be reduced.
“The Tariff Technical Committee (TCC) recommended the slight adjustment in the excise duty charges after cautious considerations of the government’s fiscal policy measures for 2018 and the reports of the World Bank and the International Monetary Fund Technical Assistance Mission on Nigeria’s fiscal policy.
“The effect of the excise duty rates adjustment on trade and investment was also assessed by the Federal Ministry of Trade and Investment and it adopted the recommendations of the TTC.
“Peer country comparisons were also carried out showing Nigeria as being behind the curve in the review of excise duty rates on alcoholic beverages and tobacco.”
The upward review of the rates was carried out in line with new ECOWAS standards and is expected to boost the government’s revenue and discourage abuse of the items.
More than 60 Indonesians are dead and dozens have been hospitalised from drinking illegal homemade alcohol, authorities said Monday, with the toll steadily climbing.
Police conducted raids in cities across the world’s biggest Muslim majority country to arrest vendors selling the cheap homebrew.
Most Indonesians practice a moderate form of Islam and alcohol is available in big cities.
But high taxes make it expensive so poorly paid workers sometimes turn to potentially dangerous homemade alcohol.
In 2016, 36 people died in Central Java after drinking locally-bought homebrew.
In the latest incidents, the numbers of deaths — including eight in Papua — has been rising over the past week, with the death toll standing at 62 on Monday, according to police and a hospital in West Java.
Seven people have been arrested for allegedly selling the bootleg alcohol, including a man in West Java who mixed mosquito repellent into his homemade concoction.
“He mixed (pure alcohol) with ginseng, cough medicine and mosquito repellent,” local police chief Agung Budi Maryoto told a press conference Monday.
In another case, a vendor who has been arrested admitted he had mixed pure alcohol with Coca-Cola and an energy drink, police said.
Police said they are chasing other sellers and distributors of homebrew.
“We believe there is a big distributor behind this case,” East Jakarta police chief Tony Surya Putra said at the weekend, referring to the deaths of two dozen people in one part of the capital.
Road Safety 2016 reports say approximately 223 lives, have been lost in Ogun state alone, due to a number of reasons, one of which Data Analyst, Babajide Ogunsanwo identifies as abuse of alcohol by drivers.
It’s been a week of horrible road movement, following the ongoing construction and subsequently a ghastly accident that occurred along the Lagos-Ibadan expressway.
Although rescue efforts were promptly completed by emergency officers such as men of the Lagos State Emergency Management Agency, (LASEMA), and Federal Road Safety Commission, (FRSC), commutters have had to suffer long hours in a gridlock in the preceding days.
Data analyst, Babajide ogunsawo, analyzing the road infrastructure and “how we got ourselves here” described the gridlock as “extremely horrible”.
He recalled that five and a half decades ago, Nigeria’s road infrastructure, and the network around the country was 65 thousand kilometres but, “today it’s more than double that amount – population has more than quadrupled”.
“At the start of this new millennium, the total estimated vehicles on Nigerian roads was 1.3 million, now its seven times what it was about 16 years ago.
“Population has significantly grown as well as number of vehicles on the roads” he added.
He then stated that a logical solution would be to increase the capacity of the roads, by increasing the number of lanes and improving maintenance of roads.
However, according to him, evidence based on several global studies, shows that when countries increase the capacity of their roads, they get more cars to fill in those roads.
“Hence, we need to realise that even though we have a transportation problem, the transportation solution may not necessarily get us out of the problem.
Mr Ogunsanwo stated that although the government makes plans based on the population figures, what they are not doing right is looking through the same perspective.
He said the Commissioner of Health in Lagos as at 2015, Dr Jide Idris, revealed something that several analysts call the “greatest information in Lagos in the last decade”.
He said although it was not about transportation, it has great significance on our road infrastructure.
According to him, Mr Idris and his team had conducted a survey among bus drivers in Lagos, and it showed that 80% of bus drivers in Lagos, were either on drugs or alcohol.
The information analyst said Lagos state has the biggest economy in the country, as measured by GDP, while also recalling that the FRSC Marshall had on Thursday, stated that road transportation was the most important means that leads people to their various destination.
Analysing all the information, he came to a conclusion that “bus drivers in Lagos indeed are leaders because they are the ones that take a lot of families to their various destination.
“However, if majority of these drivers are driving under the influence of drugs or alcohol, it only means that most of the leaders don’t know where they are going”.
Furthermore, he stated that the National Bureau of Statistics, in their last consumption reports said most Nigerian families spend more on alcohol and entertainment than on education.
Mr Ogunsanwo then posited that when there is road congestion, “we need to connect these dots so we can clearly see where the problem comes from” in order to apply necessary solutions.
As the world celebrate Easter, the Death and Resurrection of Jesus Christ, the Federal Road Safety Corps (FRSC) has cautioned drivers against drunk-driving during this festive period, as many would travel to see their loved ones .
The FRSC Public Education Officer, Mr Etuk Imoh, gave the caution during their routine check on drivers, to see the level of alcohol in their system.
He told Journalists that the Corps intend to reduce road crashes during the Easter period.
Although there is no accurate statistics of drunk driving related auto crashes in Nigeria, FRSC records show that over 1,000 lives are lost annually to road accident.
The FRSC said it would do all it could to reduce the figure of death toll on road accidents.
According to Mr Etuk Imoh, more road crashes are recorded during festive seasons and they can be attributed partly to drunk-driving.
Apart from the checks conducted by the FRSC, motor park operators say they educate their members against drunk driving, and other habits that could constitute danger on the high-way.
Call it a solution to drinking habit, a vaccine mainly for alcoholics whose drinking habit has refused to go away has been developed by a research team from the Cell Dynamics and Biotechnology Department of the University of Chile.
The team led by the director of the Department, Dr. Juan Asenjo said the new vaccine for alcoholics induces a hangover the moment any alcohol is introduced into their system, as naturally alcoholics do not like to experience hangover given the pain and discomfort they experience.
Although, the new vaccine is seen as a way of kicking the habit of alcohol consumption by alcoholics, it could also be better used as an on-going deterrent rather than a way of stopping alcoholics from drinking in the first place because the effects of alcohol withdrawal may be much worse than having a bad hangover.
Hangover is usually caused by the compound acetaldehyde, and it is produced by the liver when dealing with alcohol before it is broken down and metabolised by an enzyme.
The vaccine stops the enzyme doing its job, resulting in the person very quickly feeling sick and uncomfortable, as if they have a hangover. Further drinking will just make the feeling worse or at least prolong it.
Administering the vaccine can be done with a single injection, which is then active for between 6 to 12 months. It won’t be tested on human subjects until November this year, and that’s pending a trial on mice in the coming months to determine the right dose of the vaccine. If successful, the vaccine could be introduced into the market by 2015.
Alcohol withdrawal can be a difficult process to go through depending on how reliant an individual is on it.