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Jakarta told to manage liquor distribution
Publication Date : 23-08-2013
The Jakarta administration has been told to tighten its control over the circulation of alcoholic beverages in the capital to curb alcohol abuse, following the recent deaths of 13 people caused by bootleg alcohol consumption.
The city councilor Igo Ilham of the Prosperous Justice Party said on Thursday that tight control over liquor distribution as well as firm law enforcement were equally needed to curb incidents, caused by irresponsible consumption of lethal beverages.
“Jakarta does not have legislation on liquor control, but we do have a national regulation. However, what good is it if the law enforcement is weak?” Igo told The Jakarta Post.
“The problem has always been the lack of law enforcement on the streets. It’s classic,” he emphasised.
Igo, who is the deputy chairman of Commission overseeing people’s welfare, pointed out that the city administration should also raise people’s awareness about the danger of consuming drinks laced with methanol.
“Let’s say we regulated the liquor distribution. But some people irresponsibly drink adulterated liquor without realising the lethal consequences. The city administration should educate people about the threat and consequences of consuming drinks laced with methanol,” he said.
City police spokesman senior commissioner Rikwanto said the number of casualties from the bootleg alcohol poisoning episode increased from eight people to 13.
“The Central Jakarta criminal unit chief has confirmed that 13 people have died from consuming the lethal alcoholic beverage,” he told the Post on Thursday.
According to Suprihariyanto, a public relations officer from the Cempaka Putih Islamic Hospital in Central Jakarta, 11 alcoholic beverage poisoning patients were admitted to the hospital on Sunday.
“Ten of them died. One patient, a 31-year-old man, returned home on Wednesday as his condition is getting better,” he told the Post in a text message on Thursday.
Contacted separately, Sulastin, a public relations officer from the Cipto Mangunkusumo General Hospital in Central Jakarta, said that the hospital received eight alcoholic beverage poisoning patients on Sunday.
“Three of them died. Two are still in critical conditions. While we returned three patients on Wednesday because they are recovering,” he said in a text message.
Rikwanto said that his team would cooperate with the city administration and the public order agency to conduct raids on illegal alcoholic beverage vendors.
“However, we haven’t determined when to conduct the raids. We will have a meeting with the city administration soon to determine the dates for the raids,” he said.
He added that his institution needed to take serious actions on bootleggers to avoid vigilant acts from certain mass organisations.