Homemade Alcohol Kills Five People In Southern Malawi

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Five people have died in Malawi’s southern city of Blantyre while two others are receiving treatment for suspected alcohol poisoning.

Nine men were rushed to the city’s main referral hospital on Friday night after taking homemade alcohol.

A statement from the Director of Health and Social Services for the Blantyre District Council, Gift Kawalazira, confirmed the death of five men and said two more were receiving treatment at the hospital.

Malawi has been struggling with the illicit sale of cheap alcohol mostly consumed by unemployed young men and some minors.

Several types of cheap beer have been banned in the past, but authorities have not succeeded in having them completely eliminated from the market.

Following the deaths at the weekend, police said they had started a hunt for brewers and sellers of the local brew known by various local names including “Take Me, Lord”, “stagger” and “Monkey Killer”.

As of Sunday evening, no arrests had been made.