Spaza shops face scrutiny following food poisoning incidents

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Cabinet has expressed deep concern over the recent surge in food poisoning incidents among children, stemming from the consumption of expired and contaminated food from spaza shops and street vendors.

Minister in the Presidency, Khumbudzo Ntshavheni, revealed that the Cabinet has fully endorsed the decisions made at an International Migration Workshop hosted by the Home Affairs Department.

During a media briefing in Pretoria yesterday, Ntshavheni emphasised the urgent need for the implementation of effective by-laws to address the challenges faced by municipalities and traditional authorities in regulating businesses.

“There will be immediate joint inspections of businesses, particularly spaza shops, conducted by the departments of labour, health, small business development, and the Home Affairs inspectorate, to ensure compliance with the applicable by-laws,” stated Ntshavheni.

As part of government’s plan, an extensive audit of spaza shops in both villages and townships will be initiated. This initiative will also include mechanisms to register these establishments, a task that will involve both traditional leaders and municipalities.

The government says it is also striving to support traditional authorities in maintaining a comprehensive record of foreign nationals residing in their communities. Furthermore, the registration of spaza shops will necessitate adherence to South Africa’s Business Act, which stipulates that foreign nationals can only conduct business within the country upon investing more than R5 million.

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