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National Liquor Traders Council seeks further clarity on Limpopo’s alcohol curfew

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The National Liquor Traders Council says it has requested that the Limpopo government provide further information on the so-called Midnight Law.

The new law, due to come into effect on the 1st of August, will cut liquor trading hours in Limpopo.

It means that alcohol trade will no longer be allowed after midnight.

Council Convenor, Lucky Ntimane, says, “The MEC committed to coming back to us with a response. We did indicate that we do not have the time. We need to be able to protect our members and take this on an urgent basis. We have asked for evidence to back up their proposals and we are yet to see that. They are distancing from the truth, and they need to come out to the public to on what is to come with their innovative ideas, as it were, to fight crime by cutting trading hours. It doesn’t make sense at all.”

Meanwhile, there are growing concerns that the legislation that bars the sale of alcohol after midnight will harm the province’s economy and lead to job losses.

An emerging liquor brewing business owner indicates that the changes in trading hours will affect their income and revenue.

“The trading hours is cut by two hours, that affects the income for those certain dates, the revenue will be less, is cut of revenue while the bills are still the same this is not fair at that level.”

“The nightlife starts between 10 and 01:30 a.m. That’s when this nightclub is able to make money. If we cut those times how are we going to make money, we have a problem of unemployment in this country, and now this is going to lead us to cut a lot of jobs in this industry. The trading hours are cut by two hours, which affects the income for those certain dates, the revenue will be less, is cut of revenue while the bills are still the same this is not fair at that level.”

However, Limpopo’s Economic Development MEC, Rogers Monama believes these changes will have greater positive impact for the industry.

“Over and above, we have also increased some working hours whereas traders can now open until Sunday and it was not there in the previous dispensation, but I think we are engaging with the stakeholders to get their input and if they are salient and pertinent enough, we will also give them consideration so that we make amends.”

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