Western Cape Liquor Authority working closely with police to ensure safe trading methods

Picture: African News Agency (ANA)

Picture: African News Agency (ANA)

Published Jun 1, 2020


Cape Town – Liquor stores are preparing for an influx of customers today as outlets open across the country, with many enforcing extra security measures.

The Western Cape Liquor Authority (WCLA) said it would be working closely with the police to ensure safe trading methods.

After a 9-week ban on the sale of alcohol as part of the Covid-19 lockdown measures, the government recently announced bottle stores would be allowed to trade during level 3.

Liquor sales are limited to between 9am and 5pm, Mondays to Thursdays.

WCLA spokesperson Nwabisa Mpalala said the pandemic had led the nation to change business operations to keep the public safe.

“Our enforcement team will be working in partnership with the SAPS to monitor and ensure that there is responsible trading.

"The WCLA has also communicated to the industry to share the specific regulations regarding alcohol and its trading. Further, our organisation will continue to report all illegal trading to SAPS since it is a criminal offence,” said Mpalala.

The preparations come as the Western Cape and the Northern Cape have been identified as areas with the highest prevalence of smoking by province, according to the Human Sciences Research Council’s Dr Sibusiso Sifunda.

Commenting on a survey about smoking patterns, Sifunda said: “In the Western Cape about 36% of men reported that they smoke and in the Northern Cape about 41%. 

"For women it is 23% in the Western Cape and 18.1% in the Northern Cape. Limpopo has the lowest smoking rate in the country for both men and women.” 

The comments emerged in a

panel discussion with anti-smoking

activists organised by the Health

Department to mark World No

Smoke Day yesterday. 

The event came as the

government faced a pushback

from the tobacco industry over its

continued ban on sales of cigarettes,

with the Fair Trade Tobacco

Association (Fita) taking President

Cyril Ramaphosa to court. 

Deputy Health Minister Dr Joe

Phaahla said they wanted to reduce

the number of young smokers. 

“We know tobacco has been very

topical, particularly in this time, and

we want to assert the decision to

not allow the selling of tobacco was

and remains a correct one. 


remains a risk factor for death,

killing half of those who smoke,” he


Phaahla also used Sunday’s

event to intensify the campaign by

the government against smoking

in South Africa. He said the ban

on their sale had resulted in about

800 000 quitting. 

Phaahla called on the youth to

kick the habit: “We hope

that the message will go down to

especially our young people that this

is not cool. 

“The aim of having this activity

today as we celebrate the No Tobacco

Day is to remind smokers, young

people and non-smokers about the

risk of using and the exposure to

tobacco products, and to strengthen

our resolve and our fight against the

use of tobacco.” 

This year’s theme was titled

“Protecting youth from industry

manipulation and preventing them

from tobacco and nicotine use”. 

“Specifically for South Africa

we would also like to enlighten the

public about the risk of smoking

during this Covid-19 pandemic. 

"We know that this has been a very

topical issue with a lot of debate and

controversy but we want to assert

that indeed we believe the decision

to disallow retailing of tobacco

remains a correct one,” Phaahla


He warned that besides causing

lung cancer, tobacco use was a

leading risk factor and killed half

of those who smoked, with about

8 million deaths a year globally. 

Phaahla said the country had

over the years put in place

several regulatory measures,

including banning tobacco

adverts, prohibiting smoking in

public places, and increasing taxes

on tobacco products. 

“In SA we have made a lot of

progress because tobacco used to

kill about 40 000 people upwards

but through the various efforts of

government and civil society, this

figure has come down to about

20 000 a year. 

"But it still leaves many

people with debilitating, chronic

obstructive diseases,” he said, adding tobacco was also a risk factor in

coronary heart disease.

Cape Times

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