After numerous calls for the alcohol ban to be lifted during the lockdown period, President Cyril Ramaphosa is sticking to his guns.
President Cyril Ramaphosa, together with his lawyers on Friday 17 April announced that the ban on alcohol sales would not be lifted. This comes on the same day Ramaphosa met with the National Economic Development and Labour Council (Nedlac) to discuss deepening cooperation to combat the pandemic.
Ramaphosa’s bomb drop — which has become all too familiar in recent weeks — will have not won over certain lobby groups.
We suppose deliberation has come to a screeching halt. According to legal journalist Karyn Maughan, Ramaphosa’s lawyers said the lifting of the alcohol ban would not be tolerated.
A notice Maughan tweeted from Ramaphosa’s lawyers provided the following reasons that the sale of alcohol is self-evidently not an essential service. On this basis alone, it was considered that the sale of alcohol should not be permitted,” read the document. Secondly the sale and consumption of alcohol also has proven links to an increase in violent crime, motor vehicle accidents, medical emergencies and results in full emergency rooms and hospitals,” it said.
Prohibiting the sale of alcohol is also aimed at ensuring compliance with the lockdown regulations, social distancing protocols and proper hygiene practices by reducing or eliminating the number of intoxicated persons, in light of experience of non-compliance by intoxicated persons in general,” it added.