The government of Ondo State yesterday banned the production and sale of a locally made gin known as “ogogoro.”
Speaking to reporters on Saturday, April 25, the state Commissioner for Health, Dayo Adeyanju, disclosed that the production and consumption of the locally made substance is now prohibited throughout the state.
The ban was in response to recent sudden deaths of more than 20 individuals after reportedly ingesting the local brew. Mr. Adeyanju disclosed that the ban would remain in place until the government got to the root of how the local gin in the state got contaminated.
“Until we are able to get the source of contamination or how the methanol got into the 'ogogoro', it would remain banned in the entire state, not even only in Irele.
“We don't know how far the contamination would have gotten it. We just need this sacrifice now so that Ondo State could be free from this deadly disease and the outbreak,” the commissioner said.
He said that initial toxicology tests indicated that the victims of the sudden outbreak of a mysterious and deadly disease suffered from methanol poisoning.
“The five samples sent to the NAFDAC laboratory in Lagos revealed to us that it contained heavy concentration of methanol as high as 16.3 percent.
“This actually confirmed what we had been thinking, and that we have been dealing with methanol poisoning,” he said.
The commissioner revealed that the sensitization program embarked upon by the ministry for the people of the community had also been expanded across the state. He said thirty-three people were affected by the sudden outbreak of the strange ailment.
According to him, the state government could only confirm a death toll of twenty-three people, adding that ten patients were still receiving treatment in the hospital.
The sudden outbreak has been codenamed “#OndoX” or “#IreleOubtreak.”