WATCH: Crash, booze, bang in Cape Town as nearly 12 000 litres of alcohol go down the drain

2018-11-15 20:58

City of Cape Town law enforcement officers popped open more than 16 000 liquor cans and bottles on Thursday as the City prepares for the upcoming festive season.

However, officers did not sip the alcohol and think of relaxing on the beach over December. Instead, they poured nearly 12 000 litres down the drain to make space at the law enforcement storage depot in Ndabeni.

This is ahead of the City's operational readiness plan for the festive season, which takes effect annually in late November.

The alcohol was confiscated from beaches and other public spaces during the previous financial year.

Safety and security mayoral committee member JP Smith said alcohol was a major factor behind crime, accidents and other incidents that officials had to deal with in the City.

Smith said the City had considered other ways to dispose of the liquor.

"It breaks my heart to have to destroy the alcohol. Every year we think is there is not a better way? Can we not auction or sell it and then use that money for something productive... give it to some NGO or charity," Smith said.

But this avenue was complicated because the City would need a liquor licence to become a vendor of alcohol.

"There's a whole lot of moral and other problems, legal problems, with that."

Tavern owner's licence permanently revoked

He said going this route would also lead to citizens reasonably presuming or accusing the City of confiscating alcohol for profiteering purposes, rather than public safety. 

The Western Cape Liquor Authority (WCLA) has also been clamping down ahead of the festive season.

On Wednesday it permanently revoked a Gugulethu tavern owner's liquor licence due to non-compliance, said WCLA spokesperson Nwabisa Mpalala.

The Backstage tavern is situated in NY6.

"The social harms which are a consequence of the irresponsible liquor sales and consumption lead to dire circumstances," she said.

"As a result, of the aforementioned liquor licence holder's lack of security and control at his premises, on 29 July 2018 a young male was shot to death."

Mpalala said the tavern also contravened the Liquor Act by deviating from its trading hours.

Anyone with enquiries can contact the liquor authority on 021 204 9805 or Liquor.Enquiries@wcla.gov.za.

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