Police Impounds 266 Jerrycans Of Illicit Waragi In Moroto Town

1702 Views Moroto, Uganda

In short
Police in Moroto have impounded a total of 266 jerricans of the banned crude brew commonly known as waragi in an operation in Moroto town on Tuesday morning.

Police in Moroto have impounded a total of 266 jerricans of the banned crude brew commonly known as Ebutia or waragi in an operation in Moroto town on Tuesday morning.

The operation led by Richard Anyama, the Moroto District Police Commander was conducted in Camp Swhaili in Moroto municipality.

George Obia, the Karamoja Regional Police Spokesman told Uganda Radio Network that police got a tip off from the concerned members of the public that prompted the operation.

He says the owners escaped and have gone into hiding. He said police will hunt them until they are brought to book.

Obia said the operation was in response to the recent ban by the district authorities and the security agencies on the sale and consumption of the illicit local brew in the district.

According to Obia, the ban on the sale and consumption of the local waragi was imposed early this year after several deaths were registered suspected to be as a result of the consumption of the crude waragi.

He also noted that several residents in the district have become less productive as they spend much of their time consuming the waragi.

He says those involved in the sale of this waragi have been trying hard to beat the security by bringing waragi in town at night when the police traffic officers are off the road.

The waragi is suspected to be lased with methanol and it is largely brewed in Magamaga in Jinja.

Obia says police is waiting for a court order granting them permission to destroy the waragi.

Medical experts say methanol is a poisonous substance that causes blindness and subsequent death when over consumed by a human being.

Government imposed a ban on the importation; sale and consumption of local waragi across the country in April last year after more than 400 people were reportedly killed by the illicit brew.

The death cases were registered in the districts of Kabale, Kitgum, Kamwenge, Bundigibuyo, Ssembabule, Kampala, Jinja, Lira, Gulu and Pader among others.

 

About the author

Denis Olaka
Denis Olaka is the URN bureau chief for Lira, in northern Uganda. Apac and Otuke fall under his docket. Olaka has been a URN staff member since 2011.

Olaka started his journalism career in 2000 as a news reporter, anchor, and then editor for Radio Lira in Lira district. He was subsequently an editor with Lira's Radio Wa in 2004 and Gulu district's Mega FM.

He was also a freelance writer for the Daily Monitor and Red Pepper newspapers.

Olaka's journalism focuses on politics, health, agriculture and education. He does a lot of crime reporting too.