The National – Tuesday, February 1, 2011
By ALISON ANIS
THE high consumption of homebrew, or locally brewed alcohol ,in homes along the coastal Kairuku-Hiri communities has resulted in increasing deaths caused by alcohol-related violence.
Central police commander John Maru reported that deaths or murders as a result of alcohol consumption occur almost once a week in the districts because more and more people were involved in brewing the liquor in their homes.
He added that this had disrupted the once-peaceful lifestyle of the coastal Motuan villages.
“We receive reports of deaths and killings almost every week, especially from coastal areas situated from Magarita to Waima,” Maru said, adding that major cause was the increase consumption of homebrew in the area especially among young people.
“This is a concern to us and particularly the majority of the law and peace-abiding citizens of the community.
“Homebrew has taken over the minds of our youths.
“When they consume it, they think they are above the law and can do anything they want,” Maru said.
“This has also led them to disrespect community elders and for each other.”
Maru said he has received list of names of individuals in district who were involved in brewing homebrew in their homes and had sent 12 officers to go and look into this.
“Those who are found to be in possession of homebrew making equipment will be taken in for questioning.”
Maru said more awareness was needed in communities affected and he and his men were working with community policing officers as well as concerned community members to create awareness among family members as well and youths to recognise the dangers of alcohol to mental and physical state.