Alcohol policy alliance calls for ban on alcohol consumption in public

It wants restrictions for drinking in public during the holidays.

FILE: SAB beer crates are being gathered as the Fenyane Bottle store prepares for alcohol sales to resume on 18 August 2020.  Picture: EWN.

JOHANNESBURG - The Southern African Alcohol Policy Alliance in South Africa on Wednesday said it was not realistic to rely on the goodwill of the public to control the consumption of alcohol.

The organisation is calling for tighter measures around alcohol consumption.

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It wants restrictions for drinking in public during the holidays.

This comes as some parts of the country see COVID-19 infections rise.

The president has also been having a series of meetings including with the national command council and the premiers of country and it seems an announcement is imminent.

The group wants government to enforce a 0% t alcohol rate for drivers and for drunken drivers to have their licenses suspended for at least three months.

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Director Maurice Smithers said: “We want the department to remember that the problems of alcohol in South Africa didn’t start with COVID, they’ve been foregrounded by COVID, they’ve been highlighted by COVID, but they’ve been here for a long time and it is important we deal with them going forward especially to be dealing with disaster situations like this.”

They also want to ban alcohol consumption in public: “It’s not to say people cannot drink throughout the festive period, but simply to say even on those particular days, the later on people go drinking into the night, the more the likelihood is of problems arising and particularly violence.”

The group will hand a letter to government with their demands before President Cyril Ramaphosa makes an announcement.

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