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Mkhize defends govt move to suspend alcohol sales

While referencing only the Western Cape, Health Minister Zweli Mkhize said that ICU numbers had increased generally after the ban on the sale of liquor was lifted last month.

Health Minister Zweli Mkhize addresses a media briefing on 13 July 2020. Picture: @DrZweliMkhize/Twitter

CAPE TOWN - Health Minister Zweli Mkhize has defended government’s decision to again suspend the sale of alcohol.

He's cited an increase in trauma cases as the reason the ban had to return.

Minister Mkhize said that alcohol abuse was a big factor when it came to road collisions and violent crime.

He said that many of those admitted to hospital for alcohol-related emergencies were young and fit and should be nowhere near a medical facility.

While referencing only the Western Cape, Mkhize said that ICU numbers had increased generally after the ban on the sale of liquor was lifted last month.

"Some of the modeling that was done to predict the impact of the alcohol ban and these models demonstrated that the introduction of the suspension of alcohol sales could result in a 20% reduction of trauma and 40% reduction of all alcohol-related trauma by the third week."

Mkhize said that with a constant surge in infections, it was up to South Africans to take responsibility for their own actions.

"It is a new painful reality that we can only curb this viral infection if we citizens behave. The choice that we have to make as South Africans for the sake of our own selves and our nation."

Apart from the ban, a nighttime curfew is also back in effect.

WATCH: Mkhize explains return of alcohol ban

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