Officials: Banana-made local brew kills 11 in Rwanda

High levels of methanol were found in the stomachs of victims who drank the brew.

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Eleven people have died in Rwanda’s southeastern district of Bugesera since Christmas Day after drinking a local brew made from bananas, the Rwanda Investigation Bureau (RIB) has confirmed.

Four other are reported to be in hospital for treatment.

High levels of methanol, found in the stomachs of victims who drank the brew, could be linked to the deaths, according to the Rwanda Food and Drugs Authority.

Five people have been arrested, including the brewery’s owner, the RIB has confirmed.

The brewery was operating without a license, and its operations have been suspended, the RIB added

A countrywide campaign has been launched to clamp down on unauthorized local brews.

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