11 July 2014

Kenya: Mututho, Tired of Barking, Wants Teeth to Bite

The Chairman of the National Authority for the Campaign against Alcohol and Drug Abuse (NACADA) John Mututho is calling on the National Assembly to pass a law that will form an inspectorate department for the authority.

He says the department would be critical in enforcing the law noting that he can only recommend arrests to the National Police Service which are rarely effected.

While addressing journalists on Friday, Mututho complained that a section of police officers were colluding with illegal brewers of alcohol worsening the situation further.

"We need to look at possible amendments so that we have a body which has muscles but as per now, the anti-narcotic people only sit on our board meetings, we do not know what they do in their offices," he lamented.

"It is not something for glorifying Mututho; other institutions have their enforcing units. For the last week we have attended to 2,025 cases, we follow viciously."

He said that the authority was also carrying an analysis on all the 3,300 brands of alcohol in the country in a bid to establish a list of safe drinks.

"We have 3,300 brands of alcohol within our borders and each of the brands is being analysed for 80 parameters... we are checking if they are permissible within the World Health Organisation and local standards," he said.

"We will be banning all recycled containers like the bottles for spirits."

On Tuesday, Mututho said at least 12 million Kenyans take alcohol every day. Of these, Mututho had told the National Assembly Committee on Administration and National Security, that about two million are addicts who need rehabilitation services.

He further said that the country consumes over 70 percent of alcohol produced in the East Africa region.

"We have currently about 15 million Kenyans who are said to be drinking regularly and about 12 million Kenyans who drink daily," he stated.

"If 12 million Kenyans are drinking daily and are taking only Sh100, that's Sh1.2 million daily going to alcohol which amounts to over Sh400 billion in a year."

He went on to reveal that: "We are consuming about 70 to 75 percent of all the alcohol consumed in East Africa as per now. Those figures when you bring together with what is available from Kenya Revenue Authority even in terms of VAT are missing. Where does that money go to? It goes to crime, drugs among other things."


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