Crime preventers in Teso Bar, Adyel division, Lira municipality are seeking permission to conduct an operation in the area following reports that some individuals there are using the recently distributed relief rice grains to male alcohol.
Donald Okello, a police crime preventers’ leader attached to Starch Factory Cell, in Teso A reveals that the grains are being used for brewing alcohol in the area which is known for heavy drinking.
Okello says brewers are adding pounded flour of the rice grains onto millet in order to speed up fermentation of the popular malwa brew and increase its potency.
The crime preventer adds that several families that received the rice are not cooking it but instead selling it to the brewers who are reportedly purchasing at 1200 shillings a kilogram.
The crime preventers suggest that given the development, the Lira district local government should halt the distribution and withdraw relief given out to residents in the area since it is being misused.
Akot Sandra, a malwa maker in Teso bar who spoke to our reporter acknowledged that they are using the rice to speed up fermentation.
Akot disclosed that millet mixed with a small quantity of the hybrid rice ferments faster and produces a very good scent that attracts customers to her bar.
Anthony Ojuka the Lira district Secretary for production recently warned beneficiaries against misusing the relief food, warning that those implicated would be arrested.
Lira district is one of the recipients of rice aid from the Office of the Prime Minister as relief to poverty stricken communities in northern Uganda.
The rice however was not wholly welcomed by the locals who commented that it was tasteless, and its yellowish colour continues to raise suspicion.