Funeral Beer Poisoning: Death Toll Rises To 72

Funeral Beer Poisoning: Death Toll Rises To 72

By Chidinma Unigwe | Sub Editor on January 14, 2015
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Health authorities in Mozambique on Tuesday, January 13, 2014 revealed that three more persons had died from drinking traditional beer believed to have been contaminated with crocodile bile.

This brings the death toll to a total of  72 as the hospitalized victims drops from 196 to 35.

The director of health, women and social welfare in the northeastern Tete province, Paula Bernardo, told radio Mozambique that about seven people are still in critical condition in hospitals in the Chitima district.

Dozens of people had over the weekend reportedly consumed the local beer prepared from from millet and corn flour and locally referred to as “Pombe” in Chitima and in the neighboring Songo district at a funeral ceremony.

According to ABC News, the investigating police officials had disclosed that the barrel with which the beer was brewed is missing thereby making the investigations prove difficult.

Samples of blood and the traditional beer were sent to the capital Maputo for test and the result is yet to be seen.

District health officials had speculated that the crocodile bile could have poisoned the beer as the woman at whose funeral the people drank the beer reportedly died after brewing the beer.

The authorities of the country had on Sunday, January 11, 2015 declared three days to mourn the deceased starting from Monday, January 12, 2015 to  Wednesday, January 14, 2015.

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