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Nigeria Masterweb News Report

    Stockfish killing Nigerians in the States?

    (Saturday, November 10, 2001)

    By Chief Charles O. Okereke, Nigeria Masterweb

    Is mercury used in processing stockfish responsible for the increasing deaths of Nigerians in the United States? Nigeria Masterweb(NMW) reliably gathered that over fifty Nigerians have died in Texas this year alone. Many Nigerians are baffled with the high mortality amongst Nigerians in this part of the States. Nigeria Masterweb received an email yesterday pointing finger at mercury, an element used in the drying process of stockfish as the culprit. The email is reproduced below. NMW has not verified the authenticity of this claim nor that of the forwarded email itself. We will keep you posted as we gather more facts.

    *Note:- 'Okporoko' is Igbo name for Stockfish, and 'Umunna' the Igbo name for kin folks.



    HERE'S THE EMAIL:-

    I do not know the validity of the following FYI: ----------
    Subject: STOCK FISH POISONING: OKPOROKO ALERT
    PLEASE READ THIS AND FORWARD TO OTHER FRIENDS

    Umunna,
    A friend called as soon as I made it to work this morning to tell me to not eat stockfish until further notice. According to him, two Nigerians died in Houston recently and autopsies attributed their death to too much mercury in their blood or their entire system. The mercury was traced to part of the drying process of stockfish. Apparently, the high demand for Okporoko has necessitated the use of chemicals to aid the drying process, as opposed to traditional methods used before this new twist. The source of the story is good, so I will suggest that we err on the side of caution. So, please stay off Okporoko for a while until this story checks out. If you get too afraid and feel like to throwing away your entire stock, just call me and I will throw it away for you. But jokes aside, stay off okporoko for now.

    Ngwanu. . Charles Ume, PhD

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