Gauteng Liquor Board reverses trading hours decision for ANC birthday bash

The Gauteng Liquor Board has confirmed it has reversed its decision to extend liquor trading hours on Sunday for the ANC’s 105th birthday celebrations in Soweto.

Picture: EWN

JOHANNESBURG – The Gauteng Liquor Board has confirmed it has reversed its decision to extend liquor trading hours on Sunday for the African National Congress (ANC)’s 105th birthday celebrations in Soweto.

The board initially indicated that it would extend trading times to accommodate an influx of visitors expected in the province this weekend.

It had apparently been inundated with requests to do so but having considered feedback on its move, and consultation with Gauteng Economic Development MEC Lebogang Maile, the board has backtracked on its decision.

The MEC’s spokesperson Wisani Ngobeni says: “Following mixed public reaction, the board decided that it will no longer be considering such application for this coming weekend.”

ANC Secretary General Gwede Mantashe says the board’s original decision was wrong.

“It’s a wrong decision by the liquor board to take a decision in the name of the ANC without talking to the ANC. We’re not about drinking, it’s about celebrating 105 years of struggle, of a movement of the people. It can’t be characterised by drunkenness.”

The ANC Women’s League also came out strongly against the move to extend hours, saying it portrayed ANC supporters as people who required more time to purchase alcohol and was a blatant attempt to insult the party.

(Edited by Leeto M Khoza)