A section of Embu Members of County Assembly (MCAs) now want at least two alcohol free days set aside weekly to encourage sobriety and reduce the widespread cases of liquor abuse in the county.
Led by Ruguru Ngandori MCA Muturi Mwombo, the ward representatives observed that alcohol abuse has caused serious societal problems in the county.
Muturi, who is also the Embu County Assembly’s Health Committee Chairman, spoke at the Legislative Chambers during a special sitting to discuss the Embu County Alcoholic Drinks Control Bill.
The MCA cautioned the County Government not to be blinded by the revenue collected from liquor vendors in terms of licence fees saying no amount of taxes could compensate for the damages caused by unregulated alcohol consumption.
Nominated MCA Edna Muisyo echoed Muturi’s sentiments saying if the County Assembly was to have any impact in addressing the alcohol menace, then it should ensure the sale and consumption of liquor is banned during weekdays and only allowed on weekends.
The Assembly Deputy Speaker Steve Munene also spoke in support of strict regulation of alcohol sale and consumption, stating that the county was on the verge of losing the male population to alcoholism.
The Runyenjes Central MCA advised that “the only way of wiping the tears of thousands of women who had lost children and husbands to alcohol abuse” is to put in place stringent laws to govern the sale of liquor.
Munene warned the County Government against licensing too many bars in the quest to raise revenue, saying “the insatiable appetite for tax money” would be detrimental to the society if the youthful generation is allowed to “plunge into binge drinking.”
Kyeni South MCA Salesio Kimaru reiterated these remarks saying numerous bars in Embu that remit revenue to the County Government are not of any social benefit but have instead caused irreversible damage to many families.
While supporting liquor control laws, he said alcohol abuse had caused health complications on partakers, drained them financially, caused children to drop out of school, and led to insecurity and violence.
Mavuria MCA Ngari Mbaka pointed out that the population of Embu County was low because of alcohol abuse by men.
According to Mbaka, most families in Embu have only two children because men can no longer perform their conjugal duties due to excessive consumption of alcohol.
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