Home South African Liquor association urges govt to avoid ’knee-jerk’ response of past restrictions

Liquor association urges govt to avoid ’knee-jerk’ response of past restrictions

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The SA Liquor Brandowners Association has urged government to use science and logic to handle the Omicron Covid-19 variant.

File image: Pexels

THE SOUTH African Liquor Brandowners Association (Salba) has urged government to use science to handle the Omicron Covid-19 variant.

Salba has written to the National Coronavirus Command Council expressing concerns over the rise in infections and has called on the government to apply a logical approach and not rush to the “knee-jerk” response of past restrictions.

“From the available evidence – statistical and from front-line health-care workers – the fourth wave does not warrant destructive and unscientific restrictions, such as limiting or outright banning alcohol sales. Instead, government should focus on the vaccine drive and apply a common-sense approach to large, unsafe social gatherings,” said the organisation.

Salba CEO Kurt Moore said: “We urge the government to approach things differently this time as the country simply cannot afford another set of economic restrictions. The increase or decline in infections is not linked to the availability of alcohol.

“Any restriction will devastate the alcohol industry and its enormous supply chain and swell the ranks of the unemployed, leaving many families and communities destitute,” Moore said.

According to Moore, it would be irrational and hypocritical for the government to berate the UK and some EU nations for imposing a travel ban on South Africans, for it then to turn around and impose equally restrictive measures on its own citizens.

“The industry is committed to helping rebuild our economy and focus on the future of a post-pandemic world,” said Moore.

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