Government set to review drinking age

2013-03-18 13:53

Johannesburg - Government is considering raising the legal age to consume alcohol from 18 to 21, SAfm reported on Monday,

It reported that Health Minister Aaron Motsoaledi said 10 government ministries were working on measures to reduce harm caused by alcohol consumption.

Another proposal was that motorists could not consume any alcohol before driving.

Addressing a World Health Organisation (WHO) meeting on risk factors for non-communicable diseases, held in Boksburg, Motsoaledi said other measures to be considered included a ban on alcohol advertising and a review of alcohol pricing.

He commended the Gauteng provincial government for the changes it intended making to alcohol laws in the province, which could include not selling alcohol on Sundays.

The WHO said 4% of all deaths globally could be attributed to alcohol.

Motsoaledi said there might be a fight over the changes, but government was prepared for it, the report concluded.

  • rob.martin.94402343 - 2013-03-18 14:09

    What a lots of balls, they can get booze from an elder friend neednt visit a pub to do that,Saturday will suffice to stock up for Sunday.

      sanette.dewet - 2013-03-18 15:09

      In the western cape bottle stores are closed on Sundays. It is a pain to visitors who forget this. Yet you can go to a pub / restaurant and drink and drive home. The public transport system should improve, then less people will drive home after a couple.

      carpejugulim - 2013-03-18 15:39

      Sanette ... IF we had a relaible public transport system in all the provinces it would be a feasable idea.

      Sharlene L Rowett - 2013-03-18 19:04

      Bottle stores don't check how old people (children) are who buy alcohol. In my small town it's no problem for a 14 year old to buy alcohol. Who will check? And its easy to get after hours, just got to know where the shebeen is, or go to the tavern. Fact.

  • Mable Jacobs - 2013-03-18 14:10

    Big whoop, did police arrest people selling alcohol to under 18's??No, so why evenn bother?

      KASI4LYF - 2013-03-18 14:54

      thats so that, just another ways to waste our money in new laws that wont even work or be effectively monitored

      Andrew Selous - 2013-03-18 15:27

      how much money are these '10 government ministries' being paid to 'work on these measures'.hospitals are closing left right and centre.lossed focus health minister!

      mike.bundy.73 - 2013-03-18 17:48

      Exactly - enforcing the existing laws would create a huge reduction in drink-related problems. Meerly making new laws to be ignored will only inconvenience the already-honest people.

  • danie.malan - 2013-03-18 14:11

    There is no purpose in having a law if it cannot be enforced. How do they plan to do this? It is a wasted effort!

      Luther Du Plessis - 2013-03-18 14:31

      I can tell you why, they gone get a quote of how much is gone spend to do this and then take the money and that's how far they think..

  • Mandy Ferreira - 2013-03-18 14:16

    What they are saying is that most accidents and deaths on our roads are caused by drivers under 21 yrs ??????

  • Gerry Pelser - 2013-03-18 14:18

    Idiotic - when you drink at 14, you drink at 14, raising it from 18 to 21 isnt going to raise it from 14 to 17... look at the social causes, not the legislation. also, the drunk driver is the guy who had 7 beers, not the guy who had two - if you are going to have 7 beers before driving, it does not matter what the limit is... soft targets, that is all.

  • Andre Fourie - 2013-03-18 14:20

    Oh, that'll work...

  • Leon Roos - 2013-03-18 14:21

    Aag please! I started drinking at the age of 12. Now im 18 with a licence. If my friends and I go out we choose a driver and that driver doesnt drink. The responsibility begins with the parents where they have to teach the resposibility to children at a young age. Then will the accidents be less. The fact that they want make the drinking age 21 is absurd! I wont stop drinking after I was allowed. I will still be able to drink.

  • deon.duplessis.144 - 2013-03-18 14:21

    And how will this stop a teenager from walking up to the closest shibeen and buying his booze? This makes as much sense as a pair of boobs on a nun. You are trying to treat the symptoms and not solving the problem. Personally I agree, make the legal age 21, but I really dont think this will have the effect that they are hoping for, just as that dumb-@ss idea of banning booze on Sundays.... Like THAT is going to work?!

      ingwe - 2013-03-18 14:51

      The same 18 year olds who will be voting?

      sanette.dewet - 2013-03-18 15:14

      @ inqwe: Good point! How can you be old and responsible enough to VOTE, but not allowed to drink? How can the sexual consent age be lowered but legal age to buy alcohol be made higher? No logic in this!

  • linda.mcintyregrice - 2013-03-18 14:23

    The WHO said 4% of all deaths globally could be attributed to alcohol...this is GLOBALLY..due to our current state of police and crime SA has about that a day..yes good idea do it but first sort out crime and corruption before you spend another useless billion rand.

      mike.bundy.73 - 2013-03-18 17:51

      So they are admitting that 96% of deaths are caused by sober idiots? Obviously it's 20 times safer to be drunk.

  • FeebleGastro - 2013-03-18 14:24

    The declare kids fully grown at 18, but then want to tell them they are not grown up enough to drink. What a bunch of a-holes in the ANC government.

  • Khris Butler - 2013-03-18 14:25

    Lol, if you wanna drink you will drink it don't matter how old you are you just get someone the right age to go and buy it for you simple... What a waste of time this is.

  • Patricia Burness - 2013-03-18 14:26

    Another rule and who will police it???

      John Silver - 2013-03-18 14:49

      Correct - how will this stop the 15 years olds passed out near shebeens

  • Bernhard Heyns - 2013-03-18 14:28

    This is probably not a bad idea, but neforcing it would be a problem. They should rather focus on upgrading the other more serious problems within this country then foucssing on the smaller ones. I know driving under the influence is causing a lot og innocent deaths but how would they inforce this if they cant even lower the level of rape in this country.

  • Zohan Steppingstone - 2013-03-18 14:29

    The stupid is strong with this one.

      Zohan Steppingstone - 2013-03-18 14:30

      And then Stupid stands up in front of the world and proclaims it's own stupidity.

  • Given Ntuli - 2013-03-18 14:32

    Hashim Alma nd me can be government ambassadors here! Its possible to have an alcohol free society....ppl needs to help thn to critisice!

      mike.bundy.73 - 2013-03-18 17:55

      Why should we? Most of us are responsible, caring adults that do not allow the occasional enjoyment of a drink spoil our lives or those around us. Don't punish all for the sins of a few. Idiotic laws such as banning alcohol will have little effect other than to make criminals of those still consuming. Just check out the war on drugs and prostitution - pointless laws with disastrous results.

  • Coursetine Ogodiseng Kgopolo - 2013-03-18 14:32

    Comrades disappoint all the time do they have proof that on Sundays people die due to alcohol and this is going to do a lot of harm to the SAB which is one of the biggest companies in mzansi

  • Carol Harvey - 2013-03-18 14:33

    This is probably the most intelligent story to hit News24 I have ever read! Now, how to enforce this possible law????

      mike.bundy.73 - 2013-03-18 17:57

      The same way that all the other laws are enforced - NOT AT ALL

  • Juanita Mapson - 2013-03-18 14:36

    How stupid can that be not that I have ever drank in my life touch wood for that, but you can be 12 years old to have sex. Please they need to get there priorities straight alcohol is just a drop in the ocean.

      Bob Wowzer - 2013-03-18 14:43

      Someone needs to give you a Bells...

      Andrew Selous - 2013-03-18 15:33

      @juanita,they have toooo much free time these law makers

      mike.bundy.73 - 2013-03-18 17:58

      Age of consent is 16

  • Lesley Motsoare - 2013-03-18 14:38

    What difference will it make. from 18 to 21? most tarvens sell to any1 of any age, as long as the person has money, they will sell for him.

      Andrew Selous - 2013-03-18 15:37

      at anytime!!

  • Bob Wowzer - 2013-03-18 14:40

    I started drinking when I was around 13 (as did many other people) and the law didn't do anything back then. Given the ever-declining reputation of law enforcement I'm sure it's even easier for kids to obtain alcohol today. So what's the point in changing the minimum age if you can't enforce it? The rest of the proposed legislation is pure nanny-state mentality. Let people be. People wouldn't be such alcoholics if they didn't have to continue to hear about how the ANC is messing up...

  • Simphiwe Tladi - 2013-03-18 14:41

    Please,please,please implement that,also introduce a liquor-buying ID,ban the adverts and perhaps force every liquor place,especially tarvens to have a finger print machine that identifies the age of an individual before entering a sheebeen.Ban alcohol consumsion on Sundays,and increase the liquor prices

      DrGonzoSA - 2013-03-18 14:55

      Banning drinking on a Sunday will simply result in more ILLEGAL drinking dens, increased prices will result in increased ILLEGAL alcohol sales. Prohibition only results in increased crime.

      Leon Roos - 2013-03-18 16:34

      Yes yes lets do that!!!!!!!! And let South-Africans suffer more by crime and illegal distribution!!!!!????

      Dyl Hayman - 2013-03-22 09:42

      Drinking age must stay at 18 , they must open bottle stores on sundays , make a liquor cheaper !!

  • Martin van Staden - 2013-03-18 14:42

    Good. Government actually governing.

      DrGonzoSA - 2013-03-18 14:57

      I believe murder and rape are illegal in SA too. Making more unenforceable laws is not a solution to anything

      Andrew Selous - 2013-03-18 15:38

      put the spliff out and focus!

  • Eugene Carolus - 2013-03-18 14:42

    Finally some great news. Alcohol has brought nothing but harm to homes and communities. Praying for this to be done!

      Bob Wowzer - 2013-03-18 14:49

      Many people can handle their drinks quite well. Don't let a few irresponsible people bring everyone down. Such legislation is just as ridiculous as closing your eyes and talking to your imaginary friend in the sky.

      DrGonzoSA - 2013-03-18 14:58

      And people will stop drinking because of a law? What planet are you living on? Drugs are illegal, does that stop people using them?

      Daniel Rademan - 2013-03-18 16:22

      wine farms, brewereys, pubs, restuarants employ more than hundred thousand people. yeah wise guy - lets ban alcohol

      Dyl Hayman - 2013-03-22 09:48

      You've obviosley never enjoyed and ice cold beer? Not all that bad

  • Chris Brown - 2013-03-18 14:48

    But in SA the Apartheid Regime caused the majority of SA citizens including those folk in the 'Homelands' to resort to drinking for pleasure or stimulation of the pleasure-pain principal. Alleviation of social ills' pains; also the absence of a livelihood the majority of people could not be proud of... So, in SA the tide of the dop-system, etc. should be turned around via economic freedom, so the power-of-choice empowerment factor can revitalize people's self-esteems so most will have a choice between for example: chosing a night out drinking and spending up R1000 or a day out picnicking with friends without the emphasis on drinking sprees... Just putting things in perspective about the AGE of 'legal drinking' WFT? wahaaattttt???

  • DrGonzoSA - 2013-03-18 14:48

    Forcing it underground is not the solution

  • John Thelps - 2013-03-18 14:50

    Another law you cannot enforce!

  • DrGonzoSA - 2013-03-18 14:51

    And nobody uses drugs because they are illegal? Once again it is a ridiculous idea made up by some wannabe do-gooder who has absolutely zero idea about the problem

  • jacques.smith.7528 - 2013-03-18 14:52

    Wow!The people are negative in this country!

  • Monique Naude - 2013-03-18 14:55

    Wasting money on another conference to leave thousands of people without jobs in the entertainment industry. All this when rape, murder and corruption is the biggest issue right now. What about AIDS and HIV? Fine, I agree with not drinking and driving, but the cops can't even keep up with the murders and robberies in SA. The priorities of government lie in all the wrong places. Sorry, fix what is broken, before breaking something else to pieces...

  • Jaco Whoosh Pearson - 2013-03-18 14:55

    So genius, lets just make laws to make our troubles go away. Now teens along with young adults will have to give the hobo around the corner cigarettes to buy them drink. How bout rather not miss spending R24 billion and rather tackle poverty and education and alieviate the depression causing people to drink? But thats just my taxpaying opinion, guess you're the expert.

  • Corienne Combrink - 2013-03-18 14:55

    I think it is a great idea. But why lower the sexual age(12), it used to be 16, why not make it 18!

  • Angelo Dube - 2013-03-18 15:03

    At 18 they are just kids, not adults at all. Good move!

      BubblesdoubleO7 - 2013-03-18 15:14

      Really? 18 year old's are doing a lot more "adult" things than adults themselves.

  • Mbuso Siera - 2013-03-18 15:09

    Funny enough most people commenting on this article are not below the age of 21...for the sake of our black and coloured communities maybe this will help so as they can take school seriously...this law should be enforced with strict monitoring on township, rural shebeens and tarvens...together with the nignt clubs owened by some foreign nationals tagerting this group age...

  • Lou Duvenage - 2013-03-18 15:20

    They pee against the wrong tree. They try to solve problems accountable for 4% of the deaths. What a waste of time.

  • Eternity - 2013-03-18 15:21

    This will do nothing. I know places where 13 = 15 year olds get sold alcohol. It doesn’t matter what the age limit is if no one is enforcing the law

  • Wessel Jordaan - 2013-03-18 15:23

    Michaele really ?! Stay on the page girl it's about alcohol and its direct and indirect cause of deaths globally. I agree with 21yrs and no drinking before driving.....more people die in car accidents where alcohol has been involved than any number of war/s take in a year

  • richard.laros.77 - 2013-03-18 15:24

    So at 18 you are responsible enough to vote to elect a government, yet too irresponsible to drink. What a bunch of imbeciles!

      Farzana Rahiman - 2013-03-18 15:54

      Dont forget, wen ur 10- u can opt for an abortion withou parental consent, oh yeah and condoms are given at primary schools.... bloody flippen joke!

  • Lucielle Burger - 2013-03-18 15:26

    Brilliant - I am currently living in a muslim country that has zero tolerance to driving after having even a sip of alcohol and has a 21 age limit. We also have to have a licence for the booze shop and cannot be caught driving with it in our cars to anywhere other than straight home. The only place other than QDC (Qatar Distribution Company) that sells booze are the 5* hotels, where a shot costs the same as an entire bottle in SA and your ID is scanned and sent to the CID so they can keep track of your moments, and people are saying that changing the at from 18 - 21 is a problem?

  • Anthony Dew - 2013-03-18 15:28

    The government should also ban all media advertising of alcohol, just like they did with cigarettes. Alcohol advertisements are disingenuous- they give the impression that drinking alcohol leads to a party but inevitably alcohol consumption leads to problems.

  • Daniel Roach - 2013-03-18 15:29

    Taking alcohol away solves nothing. Prohibition only creates more criminals. The question must be asked: Why do we abuse alcohol (and other substances) so much in our society?

  • Chris Lever - 2013-03-18 15:29

    They disband the youth league leadership, average age about 30, because they don't toe the line, what chance is there of the real youths 18-21 heeding the rules? Instil social responsibility from pre-school years and let the leaders of our democracy demonstrate same and perhaps our esteemed president could sleep in peace behind a normal fence, not in a multi-billion rand security enclave to protected him from his beloved electorate.

  • Janet Butler - 2013-03-18 15:31

    Will it make a differrence ??

      Farzana Rahiman - 2013-03-18 15:52

      taking a shot in the dark, but it might have an impact on the voting age, surely if u cannot hold liquor, u wouldnt be able to decide to runs- ruins the country

  • Jammies Jamneck - 2013-03-18 15:34

    Why dont goverment lead by excample and ban all liquor at govermental functions and partys.Save us taxpayer millions in blue label consuption. Any death as a result of drinking is is death by murder,starvation,inproper health care.....looks like you have to pass a few more laws to cover all your incompetance. Off to the liquor store I go......

  • Linda Capon Kruger - 2013-03-18 15:37

    From a non-drinker, I think this is the most ridiculous thing ever. It will not stop people from drinking, on Sundays or any other day. Do you think that by raising the age of consensual sex to 21 and keeping people in doors on a Sunday will stop rape? Please spend some time on important issues that will make a difference. Harsher sentences for alcohol related crimes and accidents, and much more severe sentences for rape.

  • Sapper_Coetzee - 2013-03-18 15:44

    If we can't even enforce the age of 18 then how now the new age of 21. Go and see how many stories there are of 14 and 15 year olds being stabbed at shebeens after 10 at night. Don't tell me they were only drinking a coke.

  • morgan.pike.33 - 2013-03-18 15:49

    Good idea, difficult to enforce and definitely more pressing matters to deal with!!

  • Francois Van Eeden - 2013-03-18 15:50

    You can have sex and have children when you are 16 and you have signing rights and smoke and drive when you are 18 but you are not old enough to decide for yourself if you want a beer or not at 18. Insanity!

  • Sarah - 2013-03-18 15:51

    You can now legally have sex, expose yourself to STD, make a baby while you are at school( even though you cannot afford it) but you can't have a beer until you are 21 ???

  • Msika Bopha - 2013-03-18 15:52

    Eish, those pics of empty bottles are killing me.

  • Warren Douglas Lloyd Manning - 2013-03-18 15:52

    I completely oppose to the change of the drinking age.. I think that in general people become more responsible earlier in life when it comes too drinking. By 21 one is already well aware of how alcohol affects you as an individual which enables you to make better decisions earlier on in life; as just one of the many arguments against.