By Joseph Kamau Waweru
The county government of Uasin Gishu has put into place strict measures that are aimed at helping suppress the alarming rate of production and consumption of illicit brews.
According to County Alcoholic Drinks Control Board (ADCB) Director Koiya Arap Maiyo, for the last month of their operation, they have destroyed approximately 9,500 litres of Kangara and 1,550 litres of chang’aa which are the common illicit brews consumed.
“In the last month, we have also arrested 39 people who have been conducting this illegal business and they have been arraigned in court and in turn fined Ksh1.7 million while most of them are serving a jail term of 1 to 6 months,” Maiyo said on Wednesday.
He further noted that the good working relationship between the court and police officers has been a vital tool towards eradicating the production, distribution and consumption of illicit brews.
Maiyo pointed out that the crackdown had led to the reduced menace of illicit brews.
And as part of efforts to ensure the success of the operation, Maiyo revealed that the County Alcoholic Drinks Control Board has distributed their employees in all the 6 sub-counties to sensitize the public towards terminating the illicit brews business and in turn opting for other alternatives.
He also noted that individuals who have been most affected by the brews are currently in their rehabilitation and treatment process which have been facilitated by the government.
Meanwhile, the board’s director has issued a stern warning to the people who will be found engaging in the illegal practice of manufacturing and distributing illicit brews.
He noted that upon their arrest, necessary legal actions will be taken.
“We have put into place various measures in collaboration with the chiefs, police officers and County Commissioners and therefore anybody who will be found making, distributing or selling illicit brews will be in for it; their days are numbered,” Maiyo said.
Recently, Uasin Gishu Health Executive Dr Sam Kotut revealed an ongoing process of amending the Alcoholic Drinks Act 2014 to give more powers to the County Alcoholic Drinks Control Board.
The amendments also seek to provide stringent measures where manufacturers and suppliers of illicit brews and drugs would face punitive actions.