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House probes health implication of energy drinks

23 January 2013, 11:13

Abuja - The House of Representatives in Abuja on Tuesday directed its Committees on Health and Commerce to investigate the importation, distribution, sales and health implication of caffeinated energy drinks in Nigeria.

The house gave the committees four weeks to report their findings.

The directive followed a motion by Yacoob Alebiosu (ACN-Lagos), which was unanimously adopted.

The motion is entitled: “Urgent Need to Proscribe the Sale, Distribution and Consumption of all brands of Caffeinated Energy Drinks in Nigeria”.

Mr. Alebiosu noted that energy drinks containing caffeine, sugar, high fructose, corn syrup, herbs and other substances are now found on campuses, in bars, dance clubs and social functions across the country.

He said that several brands of energy drinks such as red bull, power horse, vault, red alert, burn and others contained high levels of ingredients and stimulants.

The lawmaker said that the stimulants contained in such drinks pose dangerous health risks such as kidney damages, seizures as well as strokes to the consumers.

“It poses even life-threatening effects on blood pressure, heart and brain function,’’ he added.

He expressed concern that heart diseases caused by the consumption of these energy drinks are alarming and threatening the health condition of the younger generation.

The legislator said these caffeinated energy drinks are mixed with alcoholic drinks like Vodka, Hennessey among others.

“The mixture of these caffeinated drinks with Vodka, Hennessey become more deadly as they tend to mask the level of intoxication already settled in the bodies of the consumers of this mixture.

“This caused young adults to consume much more alcohol than normal which often times lead to young people passing out such intake and increase in road accidents involving such people.’’

Mr. Alebiosu said that some government in the world including, the governments of Denmark, Germany, Norway and France have placed outright ban on the sale of these caffeinated energy drinks.

This, he said is due to the health risks caused by the consumption of these drinks.

The legislator expressed worry that Nigeria’s large population of young adults and teenagers are unaware of the dangers of the effect of the energy drink.

He said that Africa and Nigeria in particular had become a dumping ground for these drinks as a result of the numbers of cans sold daily in the country.

The Deputy Speaker, Emeka Ihedioha, referred the motion to the relevant committees for further legislative inputs.

Also, a bill for an Act to abolish the State Independent Electoral Commissions was stepped down.

The proposed bill seeks to ensure free and fair conduct of local government elections.

The sponsor of the bill, Ahmed Kaita (PDP-Jigawa), said that he was stepping down the bill because a similar bill is before the house.The House of Representatives in Abuja on Tuesday directed its Committees on Health and Commerce to investigate the importation, distribution, sales and health implication of caffeinated energy drinks in Nigeria.

The house gave the committees four weeks to report their findings.

The directive followed a motion by Yacoob Alebiosu (ACN-Lagos), which was unanimously adopted.

The motion is entitled: “Urgent Need to Proscribe the Sale, Distribution and Consumption of all brands of Caffeinated Energy Drinks in Nigeria”.

Mr. Alebiosu noted that energy drinks containing caffeine, sugar, high fructose, corn syrup, herbs and other substances are now found on campuses, in bars, dance clubs and social functions across the country.

He said that several brands of energy drinks such as red bull, power horse, vault, red alert, burn and others contained high levels of ingredients and stimulants.

The lawmaker said that the stimulants contained in such drinks pose dangerous health risks such as kidney damages, seizures as well as strokes to the consumers.

“It poses even life-threatening effects on blood pressure, heart and brain function,’’ he added.

He expressed concern that heart diseases caused by the consumption of these energy drinks are alarming and threatening the health condition of the younger generation.

The legislator said these caffeinated energy drinks are mixed with alcoholic drinks like Vodka, Hennessey among others.

“The mixture of these caffeinated drinks with Vodka, Hennessey become more deadly as they tend to mask the level of intoxication already settled in the bodies of the consumers of this mixture.

“This caused young adults to consume much more alcohol than normal which often times lead to young people passing out such intake and increase in road accidents involving such people.’’

Mr. Alebiosu said that some government in the world including, the governments of Denmark, Germany, Norway and France have placed outright ban on the sale of these caffeinated energy drinks.

This, he said is due to the health risks caused by the consumption of these drinks.

The legislator expressed worry that Nigeria’s large population of young adults and teenagers are unaware of the dangers of the effect of the energy drink.

He said that Africa and Nigeria in particular had become a dumping ground for these drinks as a result of the numbers of cans sold daily in the country.

The Deputy Speaker, Emeka Ihedioha, referred the motion to the relevant committees for further legislative inputs.

Also, a bill for an Act to abolish the State Independent Electoral Commissions was stepped down.

The proposed bill seeks to ensure free and fair conduct of local government elections.

The sponsor of the bill, Ahmed Kaita (PDP-Jigawa), said that he was stepping down the bill because a similar bill is before the house.

NAN

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