72 Dies, 169 In Hospital Over Beer Poisoning At Mozambique Party Over The Weekend - Welcome to: Naija Rebrander Blog Welcome to: Naija Rebrander Blog: 72 Dies, 169 In Hospital Over Beer Poisoning At Mozambique Party Over The Weekend
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Wednesday, 14 January 2015

72 Dies, 169 In Hospital Over Beer Poisoning At Mozambique Party Over The Weekend

At least 72 people who drank a homemade beer at a funeral in Mozambique over the weekend have died, health officials said on Tuesday. Authorities believe that the beer, a traditional millet-based brew called pombe, was poisoned during the course of the funeral.
While the death toll has gone up, the number of individuals hospitalized from the beer has dropped dramatically. There are currently 35 in the hospital following the apparent poisoning, regional health official Paula Bernardo told the Associated Press. On Monday, more than 169 people were reportedly still seeking treatment.
“As we prepared to determine the cause of death of people we began to receive a lot of people with diarrhea and other muscle aches. After that we began to receive dead bodies from several neighborhoods,” Bernardo told a state-run radio station in Mozambique.
Officials believe that the brew was poisoned some time during the daylong funeral, but have few leads on the cause or motivation. Those who drank the brew only in the morning had no signs of illness, the Associated Press reported Monday. But those who drank in the afternoon were sick by the next morning.
The woman who brewed the beer was among the casualties, the AP reported.
The government has declared three days of national mourning, Radio Mozambique added.
The tragedy has attracted international attention for what health officials say is the unusual source of the poison: crocodile bile. Carle Mosse, a provincial health director, told reporters that some suspected the brew was poisoned with crocodile bile. So did a district health official, Alex Albertini.

There’s also the question of whether crocodile bile is even poisonous at all.
“The use of bile is not uncommon in the production of local or poor quality beer but is not known to be toxic to the extent this outbreak shows,” Christian Lindmeier, a World Health Organization spokesman, said in an e-mailed statement on Monday. The WHO was trying to get more details on the mass poisoning from local partners in Mozambique.Culled


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