The Southern African Alcohol Policy Alliance in SA (SAAPA SA) is calling on the government to restricts liquor sales and the advertising thereof.
This is according to a statement that the alliance issued on Monday.
“SAAPA SA urges government to respond to the threatening third wave of the pandemic by strengthening the current restrictions on alcohol access.
“Doing so will limit pressure on hospitals and keep the infection rate down. It will save lives and avoid having to resort to harsher emergency measures such as imposing a complete ban on alcohol and causing avoidable economic hardship,” reads the statement.
The call comes amid the threat of a Covid-19 infections third wave – which has already been announced in Gauteng.
South Africa has in the past few days recorded more around 3000 new cases daily.
Moreover, the virus has claime more than 55 000 lives to date.
SAAP SA’s proposal to the government
- Temporarily imposing zero breath and blood concentration levels for drivers during the State of Disaster – such a measure is already contained in the Road Traffic Amendment Bill which is currently before Parliament and has wide-spread support, but won’t be enacted before the end of 2021.
- Banning all special offers for reduced price alcoholic beverages at least until the end of the State of Disaster.
- Banning all alcohol advertising except at point of sale to reduce the pressure on people to drink.
Public Events and off-consumption sales
- Prohibiting major alcohol-fuelled party events, including street bashes.
- Reducing the gathering numbers to 50 indoors and 100 outdoors.
- Extending the curfew from midnight to 22:00, seven days a week.
- Announcing that all on-consumption liquor outlets should be closed from 18:00 on public holidays and one day prior to public holidays to discourage the excessive use of alcohol in overcrowded venues and to limit the potential for ‘super-spreader’ events.
- Disallowing alcohol consumption in public places, particularly in parks, on beaches, at swimming pools, etc.
- Suspending for a minimum of three months, or revoking, the licences of outlets that break alcohol and/or Covid-19 regulations.
- Reducing off-consumption operating hours.