The alcohol industry has lamented the continued restrictions on the sale of alcohol, but experts say it is too soon to lift the ban and South Africa will have to change its approach to the country’s alcohol consumption problem.
For months, since the Covid-19 lockdown began in March, a debate has raged about the necessity of the ban on the sale of alcohol. The government instituted the ban to curb the number of hospital trauma cases related to alcohol consumption such as car accidents and violence because surge in trauma cases meant that hospitals would run out of beds for Covid-19 patients.
Last month the country moved into lockdown Level 1 and people are slowly trickling back into offices, while gatherings resume. Level 1 also came with a relaxation of the ban on the sale of alcohol for home consumption, from Monday to Friday between 9am and 5pm. But weekends are still off limits.