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Cosatu raises concerns with jobs on the line due to alcohol ban

Government said it imposed the ban to free up hospitals to deal with COVID-19 without being burdened by trauma-related injuries related to alcohol.

Image: 123rf

JOHANNESBURG - With speculation growing that government is preparing to ease the lockdown, the Congress of South African Trade Unions (Cosatu) said jobs were on the line when it comes to the sale of alcohol.

It also said the black market was also taking advantage of the ban.

Government said it imposed the ban to free up hospitals to deal with COVID-19, without being burdened by trauma-related injuries related to alcohol.

Cosatu said it understood the pressures facing the health system and sympathises with their plight.

The tripartite alliance partner, however, is concerned that the black market is taking advantage of the situation and profiting without paying tax or vat.

Cosatu spokesperson Sizwe Pamla said not only are jobs on the line, but it was difficult to police the alcohol ban.

“We don’t have the resources to enforce this. The law enforcement agencies are stretched already. So, what we are saying is that, rather than empowering criminal elements, let us work as a collective as stakeholders.”

At the same time, President Cyril Ramaphosa is expected to meet with business, labour and other role-players on Thursday to discuss the country’s economic recovery post-COVID-19.

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