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Authorities conduct compliance blitz following Enyobeni tavern tragedy that claimed 21 lives

Forensic teams removing the bodies of people who died at Nyobeni tavern in Scenery Park township in East London where 20 people, mostly teenagers, died. The cause of the the death is unknown. Picture by BHEKI RADEBE

Forensic teams removing the bodies of people who died at Nyobeni tavern in Scenery Park township in East London where 20 people, mostly teenagers, died. The cause of the the death is unknown. Picture by BHEKI RADEBE

Published Jul 4, 2022

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East London – Following the Enyobeni tavern tragedy that claimed 21 lives almost two weeks ago, the Buffalo City Metro (East London) will today (Mon) lead a compliance blitz at 19 drinking outlets.

The blitz to be conducted at Scenery Park, home of the infamous Enyobeni tavern, will be joined by other stakeholders such as the Eastern Cape Liquor Board, the SAPS and the city’s fire, and disaster management, business, planning, health and environmental services.

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Announcing the blitz, the city said the aim of the blitz, which will be conducted under the theme “enabling a safer, responsible, caring and law-abiding community”, is to inform and educate parents, tavern owners and the community at large on roles, rules and responsibilities.

Furthermore, the blitz is aimed at enforcing by-laws on illegal tavern owners and reducing the supply and consumption of alcohol and drugs in the long term.

“In light of the tragedy that took place in Scenery Park, the Buffalo City Metro is going to be conducting visits to all the taverns in this area today. The visit to Scenery Park taverns will be done in conjunction with the Eastern Cape Liquor Board and Safety authorities to raise awareness, inspect and monitor compliance.

“Today's programme will also be attended by the metro leadership, councillors, and the Portfolio Committee of Parliament (Children, Youth & People with Disabilities). There are 19 taverns in Scenery Park,” the city said in a statement.

Meanwhile, as the city braces itself for the mass funeral that will be held on Wednesday, the autopsy results have yet to be released.

According to Brigadier Thembinkosi Kinana, SAPS spokesperson in the Eastern Cape, they have no idea when the results will be made available.

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“The autopsy results are not yet out at this stage. We also do not know when they will be available,” Kinana said.

The autopsy is expected to shed light on what exactly killed the partying teenagers. Currently, there are several unverified versions of what led to the tragedy. At first, it was thought that it was a stampede until the police ruled that out.

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