File picture: African News Agency (ANA)
File picture: African News Agency (ANA)

300 000 jobs may be stubbed out by tobacco ban

By Tanya Waterworth Time of article published Jul 18, 2020

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Durban - Nearly 300 000 jobs are on the line as the tobacco industry faces collapse because of the ban on cigarette sales during lockdown, the SA Tobacco Transformation Alliance (Satta) says.

This week the North Gauteng High Court in Pretoria reserved judgment in the application by the Fair Trade Tobacco Association for leave to appeal the earlier judgment, where the court found in favour of the government’s ban on the sale of tobacco.

In a media release on Thursday, Satta said the ban was bringing the industry to its knees.

Launching their #Lift the Ban Campaign this week, Satta chairperson Shadrack Sibisi said the goal was to draw attention to “the massive number of livelihoods at risk if the government continues with its ban on the sale of cigarettes” during the Covid-19 lockdown.

Sibisi said: “More than 296000 people rely on the free flow of activity across the tobacco value chain for their livelihoods, which have been directly threatened by the ban.”

The campaign included tobacco workers, farmers, processors and manufacturers, as well as retailers. Backing the campaign, the Black Farmers’ Tobacco Association said: "Soon our businesses will go down the drain.”

The Independent on Saturday

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