The production, marketing and consumption of whisky in sachets are persistently developing serious resistance to all administrative measures towards their complete ban.
Following results of laboratory test which found that whisky in sachet and in plastic bottles is detrimental to human health, government, through the Minister in charge of industries, took the bold step banning its production and marketing on the national territory. The deadline for the substance to completely disappear was September 12, 2014. In effect, the disappearance of whisky in sachets was to give way to whisky that is produced in strict respect of standards set by the Ministry of Mines, Industries and Technological Development. Enough time was equally given with administrative sympathy for industries, wholesalers and retailers to exhaust the stock they had in their warehouses and stores.
But as faith would have it and as the D-day approached, more of the product flooded the market. Consumption persisted especially in the rural areas where it continues to serve as veritable lubricant for funeral ceremonies. The product which has been established as containing dangerous substances such as methanol is consumed mostly by youths and old people at village levels. The signs are usually there after a ceremony where emptied sachets are littered at random. Is it its massive consumption that is making it difficult to stop the market; is the question on many lips.
Or, is it because industries involved in its production continue to pay taxes to the government? However, whatever explanation can be given to justify the flourishing nature of the business; it is clear the administration wants it completely annihilated. But because of the famous administrative tolerance, the phenomenon continues to gain ground. The two-year period of grace setting the new date at September 12, 2016, has come and passed but whisky in sachet remains. Is this a slap on the face of the administration?
Does this translate some degree of administrative weakness? Or, is it a silent war dealer in this category of whisky is waging against government? Stakeholders once more met in Yaounde yesterday and came out with resolutions which are expected to be submitted to the Prime Minister for final decision. The outcome is seriously awaited as the health of the population remains in perpetual danger.