The Fair Trade Independent Tobacco Association (Fita) has expressed concern that the reinstatement of a total ban on the sale of tobacco products could be on the cards following the announcement that the government intends to appeal to a High Court, brought by British American Tobacco South Africa’s (BATSA), against the ban.
The Western Cape High Court last year declared the ban unconstitutional and unnecessary.
Fita says the ban caused irreparable damage to the industry, however, Department of Cooperative Governance and Traditional Affairs (Cogta) spokesperson Lungi Mtshali says the appeal does not mean a ban will be reimplemented.
Mtshali says, “The judgement says that the decision or the regulations is unconstitutional, we just thought that we needed to have clarity on that because it sets a precedent as well on what kind of regulations government can and cannot put into place…”
“But also secondly it questions the impact of the ban whether it had the desired impact or not so we want to challenge that the court doesn’t have the tools to measure or assess the impact,” added Mtshali.
In the video below, analysis of BATSA’s cigarettes ban court case:
Liquor Traders want government to lift ban on alcohol for at-home consumption
The Liquor Traders Formation (LTF) has called on the government to permit the sale of alcohol for at-home consumption, subject to limitations, from January 16.
The LTF says this will further support government efforts to stem the spread of the coronavirus as it will encourage the consumption of liquor at home whilst ensuring the livelihoods of liquor traders.
The LTF also calls for the government to consider a moratorium on licence renewals and linked fee increases for a period of not less than one year and that a financial package be offered to all liquor traders to cover their non-trading losses to the value of not less than R20 000.
Under the adjusted Alert Level-3 lockdown, the sale, distribution and transportation of alcohol have been banned until January 15 when the regulations will be reviewed.
The Beer Association highlights the negative effect of the ban on the sale of alcohol:
LOCKDOWN LEVEL 3 REGULATIONS: