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Bar owners to pay levy for treatment of addicts

Tuesday February 6 2018

Mwangi wa Iria.

Murang'a Governor Mwangi wa Iria. He wants bar owners to pay a levy to be used for rehabilitating addicts. PHOTO | FILE | NATION MEDIA GROUP 

NDUNG’U GACHANE
By NDUNG’U GACHANE
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MARY WAMBUI
By MARY WAMBUI
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Murang’a Governor Mwangi wa Iria has introduced a rehabilitation levy that will be charged on all alcoholic beverage distributors and bar owners in the county to pay for treatment of addicts.

He said on Monday his administration would use the levy to cater for the rehabilitation expenses for addicts.

BILL

Mr Iria said his team was working on a Bill to recommend the amount that each alcohol seller and distributor would pay.

The governor said he had come up with the idea following the increase in alcohol consumption despite last year’s efforts to rehabilitate more than 1,000 addicts.

“We used a lot of public resources to rehabilitate our sons and daughters but some of them have gone back to drinking. We can’t be spending money that would have been used to construct roads and connect residents with water on addicts who have benefited sellers. The sellers must thus be part of us in rehabilitating the addicts,” said Mr Iria.

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He added that his government would set up a team to crack down on illicit liquor. The governor said chang’aa is being sold in every village under the watch of provincial administrators, who he accused of sleeping on the job.

ILLICIT LIQUOR

And in Kiambu, leaders have renewed their fight on the manufacture and sale of illicit brews with a keen focus on Gatundu North, where the menace has persisted for years.

Led by Governor Ferdinand Waititu, Woman Representative Gathoni wa Muchomba and area MP Wanjiku Kibe, the leaders pledged to initiate rehabilitation programmes for addicts as the county government imposes strict regulations on the sale of alcohol.

Mr Waititu further suspended all bar operating licences in the constituency, meaning that no one shall be allowed to sell alcohol until they’ve obtained new licences.

“Currently, no one here is operating their bars legally because we have suspended all licences as we wait for the new regulations,” he said.

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