Liquor board members thrown out of Spur after raucous drinking spree

2013-08-16 00:00

MEMBERS from the Free State Liquor Authority, including its executive head, reportedly held such a rowdy party at a Spur in the Windmill casino in Bloemfontein that security guards had to evict them.

Staff and eyewitnesses said one of the members had threatened during the raucous party that Matilda Gasela, the CEO of the Free State Gambling and Liquor Authority, could confiscate the restaurant’s liquor licence and take away its concession.

Gasela yesterday denied the threats and said staff had acted unfairly against the liquor authority’s members.

She said she did not have to throw her weight around and did not have the authority to remove anyone’s liquor licence.

Hester Steyn, who had sat next to the group of 14, said they drank heavily, made a lot of noise and swore a lot.

One of the patrons asked the group to tone things down as their swearing was frightening the children in the restaurant.

Steyn said “all hell then broke loose”.

She said one of the men in the group called the complaining patron a racist and started yelling.

All the customers in the Spur listened as the pair swore at each other.

A manager arrived to ask the group to quieten down or leave the restaurant.

Spur spokesperson Luigi Casaleggio said the group refused both requests. He said the drama continued for about two hours, during which time patrons from 13 tables decided to leave the restaurant because of the commotion.

The casino’s security officials as well as the police were called and the officers accompanied the members of the liquor authority out of the restaurant.

Casaleggio said they had to ask the group to leave as they were spoiling the dining-out experience for the other patrons.

Gasela yesterday said the patron who had asked her group to tone it down had made repeated racist comments at her table.

She denied that the members of her group had acted in a disorderly manner.

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