'Enforce existing laws': DA slams more liquor restrictions and curfews

04 December 2020 - 07:10
The DA's Dean Macpherson says SA needs to enforce existing laws to stamp out Covid-19 rather than restrict business. 'This is what the police should be doing every day,' he says.
The DA's Dean Macpherson says SA needs to enforce existing laws to stamp out Covid-19 rather than restrict business. 'This is what the police should be doing every day,' he says.
Image: 123RF/KZENON

The DA opposes any further restrictions on liquor sales and extensions to the curfew, saying they  will only inflict further harm on SA's already ailing economy.

On Thursday, president Cyril Ramaphosa announced tighter localised restrictions, including further restrictions on the sale of alcohol, in Nelson Mandela Bay, Eastern Cape to curb the spread of Covid-19.

“With effect from midnight tonight, the hours of the curfew will be 10pm to 4am. This means that, except for emergencies, no person may be outside their place of residency outside these times.

"The sale of alcohol from retail outlets will only be permitted between 10am and 6pm from Monday to Thursday.

“Alcohol consumption in public spaces such as the beautiful beaches of the area, and parks, is strictly forbidden. This is necessary to prevent large social gatherings that often take place in those spaces," he added.

In a statement this week. DA MP Dean Macpherson said businesses like restaurants would be impacted by such regulations and cannot operate in a “stop/start” manner every time there is a wave of Covid-19.

“What we need to ensure is that the law is enforced, including alcohol-related behaviour change. This is what the SA police and the metro police should be doing every day. However, the government wants to punish restaurants for their own policing failures,” said Macpherson.

More than ever, businesses needed the business as the festive season approaches, which will see South Africans spending their money in local economies across the country, Macpherson said.

“If South Africans are being forced to leave a restaurant at 9pm or being told to be in bed by 10pm, they may very well reconsider spending their hard-earned money, which would be devastating,” he said.

Macpherson said the government was to blame for the strain the health-care system was under, citing that it had failed spectacularly since March to build “any meaningful health-care capacity”.

“If this capacity existed, as we were told was the reason for the initial lockdown, then we would not be having this conversation in the first place,” he said.

“It is once again hard-working South Africans in the liquor and restaurant businesses who will pay with their jobs to cover up for government failures.”


X