President Cyril Ramaphosa has referred the Liquor Products Amendment Bill back to Parliament as he wants traditional leaders to comment on its amendments. File photo: Ayanda Ndamane/ African News Agency(ANA)
President Cyril Ramaphosa has referred the Liquor Products Amendment Bill back to Parliament as he wants traditional leaders to comment on its amendments. File photo: Ayanda Ndamane/ African News Agency(ANA)

Ramaphosa wants traditional leaders consulted on Liquor Products Amendment Bill

By Zintle Mahlati Time of article published Jun 12, 2020

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Johannesburg - President Cyril Ramaphosa has referred the Liquor Products Amendment Bill back to Parliament as he wants traditional leaders to comment on its amendments.

The amended bill was passed by Parliament in 2018 and sought to make changes to the requirements for the production of beer. It also saw the addition of requirements regarding the production of traditional beer, especially its alcohol composition. 

It would bring changes to the production and sale of traditional beer. Ramaphosa said this is why he thought it was important that traditional leaders should have been consulted ahead of the bill being passed.

He said the bill should have been referred to Parliament's House of Traditional Leaders. The constitution recognises the leadership of traditional leaders.

"The president’s view is based on the fact that traditional beer is an intrinsic part of a number of cultural practices. Customary practices require that the production and consumption of such beverages be effected in a particular manner. The president believes the bill will regulate how traditional beer is produced and such, the bill will affect its production, distribution and consumption," the presidency said.

"The president notes that the state law adviser had recommended that the Bill not be referred to the National House of Traditional Leaders, in spite of the inclusion of traditional African beer in the draft legislation, which has implications for customary law or customs of African traditional communities."

The Liquor Products Amendment Bill is one of two bills sent back to Parliament. Ramaphosa also referred back the Protection of State Information Bill. He cited constitutional concerns with certain sections of the bill. 

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