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South Africans cheer as alcohol goes back on sale

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On Sunday, President Cyril Ramaphosa said off-site consumption alcohol sales would be allowed from Mondays to Thursdays from 10am to 6pm.

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AFTER South Africans were prohibited from buying alcohol for a month, due to the peak of the third wave of the coronavirus, President Cyril Ramaphosa’s announcement on Sunday that the ban on the sale and distribution of alcohol had been lifted, brought much joy to many South Africans.

On June 27 the president placed the country on adjusted lockdown Level 4, as the country was in the third wave of Covid-19.

Stricter restrictions were placed on alcohol sales, prohibiting alcohol consumption on-site and in public areas, including parks and beaches.

On Sunday, Ramaphosa said off-site consumption alcohol sales would be allowed from Mondays to Thursdays from 10am to 6pm, while alcohol sales for on-site consumption would be permitted, as per licence conditions, up to 8pm.

South Africans quickly took to social media to express their excitement.

South African Breweries (SAB) welcomed the lifting of the ban on alcohol following its many pleas to the government for urgent intervention, to ensure the survival of the industry, as well as that of small businesses and craft breweries who found themselves on the brink of closure.

SAB said it welcomed the lifting of the alcohol ban and reaffirmed its commitment to economic recovery.

SAB vice-president of corporate affairs Zoleka Lisa said that opening the economy and moving the country to alert Level 3 was an important step towards economic recovery.

Lisa said it was also an important affirmation that livelihoods and lives were important considerations in curbing the spread of Covid-19.

She said the recent destruction and looting that swept the country had submerged the alcohol industry even further into decimation and put countless more jobs at risk.

“Lifting the prohibition on alcohol sales comes as a welcome relief for our industry and the livelihoods depend on us, and it is now imperative of all South Africans to participate in ensuring a sustainable and inclusive economic growth path,” said Lisa.

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