'Banning booze ads won't solve abuse'

Theuns Botha says it’s naïve to think banning alcohol advertising will make a difference.

The Health Department wants to crack down on liquor advertising.

CAPE TOWN - Western Cape Health MEC Theuns Botha says banning booze advertising won't solve the high levels of alcohol abuse seen across the province.

The Health Department wants to crack down on liquor advertising, citing concerns over the impact substance abuse is having on communities.

Botha says it's naïve to think that the banning of liquor adverts will make a difference.

"The national government should do a wider consultation before they ban advertising. That is definitely not going to help. It needs a comprehensive approach and much more than that."

He says alcohol places a heavy burden on their services.

At least 80 percent of the provincial health budget is spent on preventable diseases, the majority of which is alcohol related.

These include violence, road deaths, HIV/AIDS, Tuberculosis and Foetal Alcohol Syndrome.

Botha says the misuse of alcohol needs a more holistic approach, starting with social upliftment and proper policing.