Govt decision to ban sale of cigarettes irrational, Fita tells court
Hearings in the matter are under way before a full bench of the Pretoria High Court.
PRETORIA - Lawyers for the Fair-Trade Independent Tobacco Association (Fita) have told the Pretoria High Court that government’s decision to ban the sale of tobacco products was based on a single rationale that’s not backed up by evidence.
Hearings in the matter are under way before a full bench of the court.
Arnold Subel, who is representing Fita, has described the sales ban as "dramatic" and "ill-considered”.
He said the one explanation provided by government, that smokers would increase the burden on the health system during the COVID-19 pandemic, was not factual and it was not supported by any evidence.
The national COVID-19 command council banned the sale of tobacco products in March, prompting legal challenges and drawing outrage from smokers who've had to get their fix on the black market.
WATCH LIVE: The High Court in Pretoria hears case on the lockdown tobacco sales ban