Palace awaits final report on milk tea deaths

Rappler.com
Palace awaits final report on milk tea deaths
The Food and Drug Administration is expected to release on Monday the result of its tests on samples taken from the milk tea shop

MANILA, Philippines – Malacañang will await the final report on the milk tea poisoning case in Manila that killed two people before issuing a statement on the incident, a Palace spokesperson said on Saturday, April 11.

Deputy Presidential Spokesperson Abigail Valte made the statement in an interview on state-run Radyo ng Bayan when asked if Malacañang has any directive to local governments following the incident, especially as cold beverages are more popular during summer.

“We’d wait [for] further results of the investigation of the police before making any comment….I don’t want to take the results as they seem on the surface, but rather to wait for the results of the investigation of the PNP on the matter,” Valte said.

She said the initial police report, which pointed to tainted milk tea as the cause of death of a customer and the store owner, is not yet the full story.

Valte said she agreed with the observation of the radio anchor who was interviewing her that the story may not be just a case of “spoiled” milk tea.

“It may be that there is more to what we know. So we’d rather not comment at this time,” she said.

Samples from the shop have been sent to the Food and Drug Administration (FDA), which is expected to release the test results on Monday.

On Thursday, Suzaine Dagohoy and Arnold Aydalla, a couple, purchased drinks at the ErgoCha Milk Tea House in Sampaloc, and later complained to the owner about the foul taste of the drink.

William Abrigo, the store owner, vouched for the drink that he himself mixed and even tasted it. 

Abrigo and Dagohoy died that day while Aydalla was confined but is now said to be in stable condition. 

The Philippine Star tweeted on Saturday night that Abrigo’s son is under investigation over the incident.

The milk tea shop has been shut down by city officials. – Rappler.com

Milk tea image via Shutterstock

(Editor’s Note: In an earlier version of this story, we referred to the FDA by its old name, the Bureau of Food and Drugs.)

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