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'NDZ is the aunty who wants everyone to live a holy life': Phumzile van Damme on booze ban

15 July 2020 - 12:12 By Cebelihle Bhengu
Phumzile van Damme does not support the renewed ban on the sale of alcohol.
Phumzile van Damme does not support the renewed ban on the sale of alcohol.
Image: Esa Alexander

The DA's Phumzile van Damme says co-operative governance & traditional affairs (Cogta) minister Nkosazana Dlamini-Zuma is “that mean, judgmental aunty in the family who expects everyone to live a holy life as per her moral code".

She was responding to a video of Dlamini-Zuma detailing the ban on the sale, distribution and transportation of alcohol under level 3 lockdown.

On Monday, the national coronavirus command council briefed the media on amended lockdown regulations. The briefing followed President Cyril Ramaphosa’s address on Sunday amid the surge in Covid-19 infections.

A Twitter user shared a short video of Dlamini-Zuma’s briefing where she spoke about the ban on alcohol.

“We encourage people to stop drinking alcohol until the threat of Covid-19 is over. If we drink alcohol, our immune systems may not be able to fight the disease,” the minister says in the video.

Van Damme received backlash from some Twitter users who support the ban.

Asked by one if she was angry because she did not have enough time to stockpile, Van Damme responded: “Ngiright Lungisa. I bought in bulk long ago because I suspected this would come.”

During the briefing, Dlamini-Zuma said when people are under the influence of alcohol, “they let their guards down”, forget to wear masks and therefore worsen the spread of Covid-19.

She said some people cause accidents when they drive while drunk, and this places a burden on the health system.

“When they get into their cars, they drive recklessly, creating accidents. Those people have to be rushed to hospitals and they become an emergency, which means they are taking space that should be used to look after people who have Covid-19.”