Prime Minister Dr Ralph Gonsalves says that he does not support the large consumption of alcohol which has now been associated with funerals.
Speaking on radio on Sunday, Gonsalves said that it had now become a phenomenon where people were attending a funeral, and during the procession to the cemetery, persons would be seen dancing and singing – but doing so with alcohol in their hand.
“I don’t like it at all,” Gonsalves said.
According to him, it was alright if someone wanted to have a live band follow the procession to the person’s final resting place.
He said that one day as he was on the road, he had to step aside as a funeral procession was making its way down.
“I shake my head, people drinking beer and they shouting, comrade! And they drinking their beer and they going down” he said.
“And I mean a lot of people stay out of the church, drinking outside of the church – I don’t know, I haven’t heard the preachers talking about it,” Gonsalves continued.
He said further that we needed to watch as a nation not just the number of ‘rum shops’ that were opening up, but the consumption of alcohol, particularly strong rum.
‘And we have to have programs on ‘Health Word’ and so on,” Gonsalves said.
People did not realize the amount of sugar that they were consuming when they drink large amounts of rum, or alcohol.
But diabetes was a serious problem, and if people drank alcohol without eating, that had further negative impact on one’s health.
“Your body might be able to hold it for a while, but very quickly that body becomes not cured by the rum,” Gonsalves explained.