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Haiti: Several killed after drinking home-made alcohol containing methanol

From Jamaica Gleaner

At least 28 people including 15 Haitians were killed after consuming home-made alcohol containing methanol, health authorities have confirmed.

Minister of Public Health, Marie Greta Roy Clement, confirmed the deaths following a visit to the General Hospital, adding that 15 people from the Dominican Republic had also died.

Health authorities said that several Haitians have been hospitalised and at least two of them have lost their eyesight.

The confirmation of the deaths come a day after the Departmental Health issued an alert relating to cases of intoxication and deaths following the consumption of adulterated methanol in several border municipalities including Los Cacaos, Las Carreras and Saltadère.

Clement and her colleague Pierre Marie du Meny, the Minister of Commerce had also warned the population against the consumption of any liquor based on methanol.

“The two ministries are deeply concerned by this situation and that concrete steps are being taken on the ground to stem this recurring problem before it spreads to other parts of the country,” they said in a statement, adding that efforts have been stepped up to deal with the situation especially during this period of end-of-year celebrations.

The Directorate of Civil Protection said that several cases of intoxication due to the consumption of adulterated alcohol have been recorded in several districts and is urging “people to take a lot of care in what they drink during the holiday season.”

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