The Oyo State House of Assembly on Tuesday urged the state government to sensitise its people and residents to the health hazards of cooking with paracetamol, potash and alum.
The assembly said the state government should, through the Ministry of Information and Orientation, sensitise the public to the need for food safety.
It said there are several dangers in adding unhealthy ingredients, such as acetaminophen (paracetamol), to cooking because they are injurious to health.
The call followed a motion moved by Daud Olalere (PDP-Ibadan Northwest Constituency).
Mr Olalere raised concerns that several homes, food vendors, restaurants and bars now engage in the unhealthy use of paracetamol as a meat tenderiser.
“They also use alum and potash, and some other chemicals, in cooking foods like beans, meat and ‘ewedu’ soup, and alum for water,” he said.
The lawmaker claimed that the mortality rate among several people due to consumption of these substances has surged, with an estimated 420,000 deaths recorded yearly.
He said the unhealthy practice was not limited to cooking, saying it has also been confirmed that raw fish, imported hides (ponmo) and stock fish are now being preserved with sniper.
“Food safety and nutrition and food security are inextricably linked, and lack of safe food creates a vicious cycle of disease and malnutrition, which overburdens the public health service.
“It also disrupts social and economic progress, and it is a detraction from the quality of life, constituting a major reason for dangerous and life-threatening diseases, such as cancer and liver disease,” Mr Olalere said.
Members of the legislative house, while deliberating on the motion, expressed displeasure on the matter and called for urgent government intervention to save the lives of innocent residents.
However, the House, while adopting the motion, resolved that the state government should, through the Ministries of Health and Environment and Natural Resources, engage owners of eateries, bars and restaurants.
Meanwhile, the Blood Transfusion Safety Bill, 2022, sponsored by Sanjo Onaolapo (Ogbomoso South-PDP), went through the third reading for passage.
The assembly, presided over by the deputy speaker, Muhammed Fadeyi, in the absence of the speaker, Adebo Ogundoyin, then adjourned till Wednesday.