Communities must alert authorities to illegal liquor traders

Monday, September 14, 2009

Bloemfontein - Trade and Industry Minister Rob Davis has urged communities to alert authorities to illegal liquor traders.

"Although it is the responsibility of government to regulate the industry, communities can play a vital role by sounding the alarm to authorities about those not adhering to the law," Davis said on Monday, at the launch of the 2009 National Liquor Regulators Forum (NLRF) campaign.

He said some liquor traders disregarded the law and operated without licenses which posed a great challenge to government.

Minister Davis said more needed to be done by the department in promoting proper and responsible liquor trading as prescribed by the Liquor Act.

The minister urged communities to learn more about the industry to be in a better position to report the transgressors.

Themed "Empowering the communities on their rights and duties with regards to liquor regulation", the campaign aims to encourage civil society to play a leading role in curbing the effects of socio-economic problems as well as promote the voluntary compliance within the liquor industry.

This year's campaign entails a series of awareness and education-related activities, which will be rolled-out by the provinces from now, through to 2010, as the country prepares for the 2010 FIFA World Cup.

The department believes that empowering communities, including civil society structures with regards to the prescripts of liquor legislation, will encourage them to play an active role in liquor regulation.

The campaign will take place under the support of the NLRF, a national structure comprising of liquor regulators from the national and provincial spheres of government, as well as the South African Police Service.