FITA's court bid to have cigarette ban overturned, dismissed with costs

accreditation
South Africa instituted its ban on the sale of cigarettes in late March, 2020.
South Africa instituted its ban on the sale of cigarettes in late March, 2020.
Getty Images

The High Court in Pretoria has dismissed with costs an application by the Fair Trade Independent Tobacco Association to have government's ban on the sale of tobacco products overturned.

FITA argued that cigarettes should be viewed as essential on the basis that tobacco is addictive, among other things.

However, the court was unconvinced.

"FITA’s argument that cigarettes ought to have been considered 'essential' because they are additive has no merit. The fact that a substance is addictive does not render it essential. We therefore find no basis on which to interpret the level five regulations as permitting the sale of tobacco products," reads the judgment.

It adds that it was convinced by government's submission that FITA's argument was "misconceived" as it "ignores the context under which the regulations were promulgated", namely an "unprecedented disaster" that required "swift and effective action from the State".

The application by Fair-Trade Independent Tobacco Association was dismissed with costs, including the costs of three counsel.

On Friday morning, the court date for a separate legal battle between government and British American Tobacco SA was moved to August. 

We live in a world where facts and fiction get blurred
In times of uncertainty you need journalism you can trust. For only R75 per month, you have access to a world of in-depth analyses, investigative journalism, top opinions and a range of features. Journalism strengthens democracy. Invest in the future today.
Subscribe to News24
Rand - Dollar
15.11
-1.1%
Rand - Pound
20.46
+0.2%
Rand - Euro
17.66
-0.9%
Rand - Aus dollar
10.94
-0.4%
Rand - Yen
0.14
-0.6%
Gold
1,733.75
-0.9%
Silver
22.44
-0.8%
Palladium
1,878.68
-4.6%
Platinum
966.87
-1.7%
Brent-ruolie
79.53
+1.8%
Top 40
57,462
-0.6%
All Share
63,784
-0.6%
Resource 10
56,880
-1.5%
Industrial 25
82,305
-0.7%
Financial 15
14,437
+1.3%
All JSE data delayed by at least 15 minutes Iress logo
Company Snapshot
Voting Booth
What potential restrictions on unvaccinated South Africans may make the biggest difference to public health, the economy?
Please select an option Oops! Something went wrong, please try again later.
Results
Limited access to restaurants and bars
11% - 161 votes
Limited access to shopping centres
14% - 208 votes
Limited access to live events, including sport matches and festivals
27% - 389 votes
Workplace vaccine mandates
47% - 680 votes
Vote