Double whammy for alcohol traders who've also suffered from looting

Bodies including the Beer Association of South Africa, the Liquor Traders Association of South Africa and VINPRO want sales to resume to prevent a total collapse of the industry and a further boost to the illicit industry.

FILE: The sector has to endure another two-week ban following President Cyril Ramaphosa announcement on Sunday night. Picture: 123rf.com

CAPE TOWN - With liquor outlets increasingly becoming the target of looting and rioting in KwaZulu-Natal and Gauteng, the alcohol industry has on Tuesday called on government to lift the ban.

Bodies including the Beer Association of South Africa, the Liquor Traders Association of South Africa and VINPRO want sales to resume to prevent a total collapse of the industry and a further boost to the illicit industry.

The sector has to endure another two-week ban following President Cyril Ramaphosa announcement on Sunday night.

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Not only is the sector being affected by the latest alcohol sales, many have fallen victim to looting in parts of the country.

The alcohol sector said liquor stores had been targeted by looters and many of its members, who were already experiencing crippling damage to cash flow, were losing their entire stock - running into hundreds of millions of rands.

The South African Liquor Brandowners Association's Sibani Mngadi said they had received reports of warehouses and retail premises being looted in Pretoria, Boksburg, Durban and Bloemfontein.

And now, with the political unrest KwaZulu-Natal and Gauteng has become a firestorm.

“Retailers have lost stock worth tens of millions of rand and are now left with vandalised stores. The looting of liquor shops picked up even more steam after government announced yet another extension of the ban on alcohol sales,” Mngadi said.

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