“The total number of deaths is 23,” Ondo state health commissioner Dayo Adeyanju told newsmen by telephone. Last Monday the death toll stood at 18.
Adeyanju said the five additional deaths were those taken to hospital when all the victims fell ill in the town of Ode-Irele earlier this month and that there were no new cases.
The mysterious symptoms and deaths raised fears of a contagious disease but investigations ruled out illnesses such as Ebola and other viral conditions.
Symptoms included headache, weight loss, blurred vision and loss of consciousness. All the victims died within a day of falling ill.
Adeyanju said the state government was investigating the source of the batch of gin as well as trying to improve the production of locally made alcohol to improve the safety of consumers.