The Presidency has refuted claims that liquor shops will be shut down from Wednesday, this after several voice notes circulated on social media.
File picture: Tracey Adams/African News Agency (ANA)
The Presidency has refuted claims that liquor shops will be shut down from Wednesday, this after several voice notes circulated on social media. File picture: Tracey Adams/African News Agency (ANA)

Government has no plans to stop the sale of alcohol

By Se-Anne Rall Time of article published Jun 8, 2020

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Durban - Government has no plans to reinstate the ban on alcohol. On Monday, several voice notes surfaced in community WhatsApp groups claiming that the sale of alcohol will be banned again from Wednesday. 

"Morning boys, just a quick heads up. Just got a rumour that they are cancelling the sale of booze effective from Wednesday this week. If you want booze, you guys better move your a***s and go buy. I got it on first hand authority that they are going to stop the selling of booze until the end of July. So boys, make it happen. You better get some stock," the man on the 24-second long voice note said. This was just one of many messages shared on social media platforms.

However, the Presidency denied the claim. 

According to presidency spokesperson, Khusela Diko, no such calls have been tabled before the National Coronavirus Command Council at this point. 

The sale of alcohol was lifted on June 1. This was done as part of the country's easing to Level 3 of lockdown. 

However, alcohol can only be purchased between Monday and Thursday. The sale of alcohol is prohibited on Fridays, Saturdays, Sundays and on public holidays. 

Since the lifting of the alcohol ban, trauma cases and hospitals around the country have recorded a spike in cases. 

According to the Weekend Argus,  the Western Cape’s emergency and trauma units have already noted an increase in the number of alcohol related injuries and incidents.

Western Cape Health Department spokesperson, Mark van der Heever, said previously during   a 12-hour period, medical teams attended to 28 patients. 

He said on Monday (June 1), they treated 50 patients - of  which the majority was alcohol-related trauma.

Government has however, vowed to crackdown on liquor shops that flout lockdown regulations. 

And in KZN, E conomic Development MEC Nomusa Dube-Ncube, said her department had closed down 10 liquor selling outlets for breaking the law. 

She said  the sale of expired   liquor   and mixers was one of the common areas of contraventions been picked up by inspectors.

"The attitude of traders is generally positive and cooperative towards the inspectors from our entity – the KZN Liquor Authority, SAPS and other law enforcement agencies. A total of 747 licensed premises have been inspected with 10 liquor outlets being shut down. Inspections are currently underway throughout the corners of the province and will continue," she said. 

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