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Health experts warn against consumption of ‘ponmo’

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COWHIDES, popularly known as ‘Ponmo’ processed with flames from burning tyres and fuel, has been said to be dangerous to health.

Medical  experts said that tyres are rubber products mixed with organic compounds and are dangerous to man.

Michael  Ogbuagu, a medical practitioner, who spoke to  National Light  said that consumption of  cow skin or ponmo burnt  with tyres or fuel is dangerous and it causes cancer and warned against it’s consumption.

He added that smoke from  fuel and burnt tyres, affects human beings  through the inhalation of the pollution from the burning, as well as through consumption of the animal skin or meat.’

According to him,  animal skins and substances contained in them usually go into the animal skin while burning, and this is dangerous to man and can as well cause cancer.

On his part, Amos Chinenye, a staff of the Enugu State Ministry of Health, explained that , “Due to the penetration of the poisonous chemical substances from the tyres and fuel into the skin of the animal while burning, it is not healthy for human consumption as it is cancerous.”

He said that the ministry had taken  some steps to deal with the situation.

“The Ministry of Health has been going to abattoirs in the state to monitor and stop people who are still in the practice of using tyres and fuel to burn or roast their animal skins.

“The ministry is also planning to present a bill to the state House of Assembly to enact a law that would stop the usage of tyres, fuel and other dangerous materials in processing consumable items,”he said.

Chinenye,  who is a deputy director  in the ministry urged members of the  public to avoid the usage of rubber materials, fuel and other harmful materials in burning their meat and cowhides.

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