Ternate, N Maluku (ANTARA) - The North Maluku police seized 1,152 plastic bottles filled with local liquor of "Cap Tikus" (Rodent Brand) from KM Barcelona I passenger ship on Saturday.

The vessel arrived at Ternate city's Ahmad Yani Port from Manado, the capital of North Sulawesi Province, North Maluku Police Spokesperson Sen.Coms. Adip Rojikan said.

"An attempt to smuggle 1,152 bottles of local alcoholic beverage into Ternate can get foiled thanks to a tip-off given by community members," he said here Sunday.

The North Maluku police investigators probe the case, and have questioned several witnesses, including a KM Barcelona I's crew member and two police officers, he said.

"I appeal to all North Maluku residents not to sell or consume alcoholic beverages by considering the side effects of alcoholism," he added.

ANTARA noted that alcohol consumption remains a serious problem in several Indonesian provinces in the midst of ongoing global pandemic of novel coronavirus disease.

The Papua provincial government, for instance, has banned the liquor production, distribution, and sale since 2016.

However, those making money from producing, distributing, and selling liquor beverages keep going ahead with their illegal business activities to serve local residents.

In fact, consuming alcohol cannot protect the drinkers from the COVID-19 infection. Instead, the World Health Organization has warned that those with an alcohol use disorder are "at greater risk of COVID-19".

As revealed in its public awareness campaign in https://www.euro.who.int/__data/assets/pdf_file/0010/437608/Alcohol-and-COVID-19-what-you-need-to-know.pdf, the WHO further warned that the liquor may more likely make the drinkers feel homeless and incarcerated than other members of their communities.

Therefore, the WHO suggests that those suffering the alcohol addiction take this COVID-19 pandemic situation as a momentum to quit drinking for the sake of their health.

If they fail to stop drinking, the WHO suggest that they at least "cut down considerably, as various social cues and peer pressure situations, such as parties, friends' gatherings, restaurants and clubs, are (by necessity) avoidable." (WHO, 2020).

Indeed, drinking alcohol does harm the drinkers' health condition in both short and long terms.

The long term health problems that those consuming the liquor beverages may face are, among others, "swelling and pain, alcoholic liver disease, cancer, yellowing of skin and spider veins, and potential weight gain" (Te Hiringa Hauora, 2020).

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Translator: A.Fatah, Rahmad Nasution
Editor: Fardah Assegaf
Copyright © ANTARA 2021