Dozens of people have taken to the street of the southern Algerian city of Ouargla to protest against Health Minister Mokhtar Hasbellaoui after his comments about the death of a university professor who was stung by a scorpion.
Talking about Aisha Aouissat’s death, the minister, Mokhtar Hesbellaoui, told reporters in Algiers that “animals are inoffensive. They do not attack unless they are under threat.”
The 38-year-old was rushed to a local hospital right after the accident but died of a heart attack 10 days later due to the lack of appropriate services and personnel, according to her family.
But the department of health in the province of Ouargla said that the victim died of complications due to the strength of the venom and not of negligence.
However, the report does not deny the allegation that there is a lack of specialist doctors in the oil-rich province.
The protesters in Ouargla on Thursday denounced the minister and the lack of specialised services and personnel in the local hospital.
The professor’s death sparked a debate about traditional methods used by locals to treat scorpion stings.