Health minister Zweli Mkhize’s latest take on the ban on the sales and distribution of alcohol has again spraked debate online.
“Hopefully that is going to continue until we are able to manage the pressure of Covid-19,” said Mkhize.
“We will continue to monitor the situation and see when there is need to change the restrictions that have been put in place.”
Mkhize’s statement comes as many liquor industry players, including SA Breweries, the Liquor Traders Formation and Craft Brewers Association SA, have called for the ban to be lifted, citing that it was causing financial devastation.
Proposals have been made to the government to lift the ban on liquor sales and distribution under level 3 lockdown.
On social media, users aired their frustrations about the liquor ban, with many saying it was “unjustifiable”.
Here is a snapshot of some reactions:
Because of the alcohol ban, at stake are 165,000 jobs, and in South Africa, 165,000 jobs means more than 600,000 people who depend on those 165,000 people will be impacted adversely.
— MisterTakura (@TakuraTumi) January 19, 2021
Home consumption of alcohol, or even off site drinking can help those who have lost their jobs to get them back. Ban on alcohol is not the solution.
— The Valley (@Amthevalley) January 20, 2021
The government is grappling at straws with this alcohol ban, they had a lockdown last year for as long as eternity (in preparation for the hospitals to be able to deal with Covid cases) what happened to that preparation if we still need bans today to make the hospitals cope?
— Peezus The minister of throat affairs (@ThisIsSaleni) January 20, 2021