WC Liquor Authority investigates 103, suspends 36 licenses
Between 27 March and 24 July 2020, the Western Cape Liquor Authority (WCLA) has investigated 103 cases of non-compliance. While the Minister of Community Safety, Albert Fritz, welcomes the WCLA’s efforts to address alcohol related harms, Minister Fritz sympathises with struggling industries and calls for calm amidst looting of liquor stores.
Of these 103 matters investigated, 44 matters were placed on the Liquor License Tribunal’s (LLT) case roll of which:
• 36 licences were suspended; and
• 8 applications were dismissed.
Minister Fritz said, “As a provincial government, we recognise that many liquor license holders including restaurants and bars have been placed under enormous strain. We are sympathetic and understand that many jobs and businesses are on the line due to the ban on the sale of alcohol. I support the Premier’s call for a smart approach on the sale of alcohol which also reduces alcohol related harms.”
Minister Fritz continued, “I further wish to condemn the spate of lootings of liquor stores that we have seen amidst violent protest action over recent weeks. Destruction to property, whether public or private, and causing physical harm to others can under no circumstances be justified. I call on individuals to remain calm and adhere to the lockdown regulations.”
Of the 36 licences that were suspended, 33 section 71(4) return hearings as well as further section 20 considerations on 13 of these matters took place, of which:
• 1 licence was revoked after finalisation of a section 20 consideration, while 30 suspensions were lifted by the LLT; and
• 2 suspensions were lifted, one in the High Court and one as part of an internal Appeal Tribunal proceedings. Three return hearings are pending.
Minister Fritz said, “I urge members of the public who are aware of any alcohol related contraventions to immediately report such to SAPS. Any persons wanting to lodge a complaint or report a contravention of the Regulations can also contact the WCLA on 021 204 9805.”
Source: Government of South Africa