Gauteng Liquor Forum Threatens to Take Government to Court for Alcohol Banning During Lockdown

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Lockdown regulations that prohibit certain industries from being operational has finally hit most businesses hard in the pockets.

President Ramaphosa announced earlier this week that lockdown won’t be ending this coming week, it will be extended with another two weeks.

Nonessential businesses/services were ordered by lockdown regulations to suspend their operations for time being. Alcohol and restaurants as one of them.

A non-profit organisation claiming to represent more than 20 000 businesses Gauteng Liquor Forum has decided to take government to court for relaxation of regulations in alcohol trading.

In a document that circulated on social media addressed to the President and written on 11 April, the organisation say these regulations set out by the government violates their constitutional right to their trade.

“Our clients have rights to be consulted when decisions of this magnitude are taken given the adverse economic impact.”

“Given the urgency, even the shortened process of consultation on the issue of alcohol banning could have sufficed, but there has been no consultation at all. Even when the President announced the extension to the period of lockdown, no opportunity was given for representations to be made on the issue of relaxing of the draconian provisions such as the total ban on alcohol and cigarettes” said the organisation.

“Unless we receive [a] written undertaking from the Honourable President by no later than 12h00 on Tuesday 14 April 2020, our clients will have no option but to approach court on [an] urgent basis for appropriate relief,” said the letter.

Also Read  Over 17 000 Arrests Made for Lockdown Regulation Violation

The total ban of alcohol during this lockdown has found several people finding themselves on the wrong side of the law, some behind bars.

Gauteng Liquor Forum is not the first organisation to challenge the lockdown. Another organisation took government to court to have the lockdown scrapped saying it was irresponsible and irrational of the government to have taken such move.

The court application was dismissed.

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