By Dayo Johnson
Akure—DETECTIVES from Ondo State Police Command are working round the clock to unravel the mysterious death of three persons after consuming a local gin, popularly known as ogogoro at Oka Motor Park in Ondo town, Ondo State.
This is coming as the state government said last week that it had curtailed the outbreak of a strange disease which caused the death of 23 persons at Irele area of the state.
The government said the 23 who died at Irele consumed poisonous ethanol and banned the consumption of ogogoro across the state.
Vanguard gathered that the deceased persons in this latest incident included a member of the National Union of Road Transport Workers, NURTW, in the park, an electrician and another person working in the motor park.
It was learned that the three persons consumed the local gin at the park and immediately complained of stomach upset. Other members of the union reportedly applied local herbs to calm them down, but they soon became unconscious.
An eyewitness said they died before they could be rushed to a nearby hospital in the town, adding that the deaths were mysterious as other members of the union usually drank the same ogogoro.
Vanguard gathered that the seller of the ogogoro had fled the park for fear of arrest by policemen, who reportedly stormed the motor park to investigate the incident.
The eyewitness said consum-ption of ogogoro at motor parks by members of NURTW was a daily occurrence.
It was also gathered that the deceased had been buried according to Muslim rites without undergoing any autopsy to confirm the real cause of their death.
Contacted, the police image maker, Wole Ogodo, said: “When I called the DPO of the Enuowa Police Division in Ondo, he said nobody had reported the case at the police station, that they too heard it as rumour in the town.
“We have commenced investigation and after the investigation we shall let the whole world know what actually happened to the said three persons.”
We ‘re in control— Health Commissioner
It would be recalled that the Health Commissioner, Dr. Dayo Adeyanju, last weekend said the state government has successfully curtailed the ethanol poison at Irele area of the state.
He said the sensitization efforts of government had yielded results on the consumption of the local gin.
The commissioner added that both National Agency for Food and Drug Administration and Control, NAFDAC, and SON had intervened to standardize the brewing of the local gin and regulate it’s production.
Adeyanju said: “Those that died as a result of the consumption of the local gin are the chronic drinkers, while those that just tasted it have since regained their sights.”
According to him, a high concentration of the ethanol poison was discovered in the system of those that died as a result of its consumption.
Adeyanju pointed out that the ban on the consumption of ogogoro in the state still subsists, while government would deal decisively with those who flouted the directive.