9 October 1998

Liquor Bill

The purpose of the Liquor Bill, is both to address the desperate socio-economic consequences of liquor in our society. While recognising the economic benefits of the liquor industry. The apartheid regime used liquor regulation as a means of social control, social engineering and labour mobilisation. The NP Government passed laws that kept blacks from making and getting liquor, and whites used the "tot" system to pay black workers. The previous Government used a different approach to each of the two different constituencies, one of discrimination, lack of development and high levels of unemployment in black communities and one of concentrating massive wealth, political power and benefits in white communities.

South African Liquor Policy in Need of Change

The results of the apartheid liquor policy were countless raids, harassment, arrests, prosecutions and imprisonment of blacks. Also, it led to social break down, family violence, alcohol related disease, crime and accidents in poor black communities. A large illegal liquor trade started in our townships. Blacks responded to the policy with rising resistance and defiance to the policy by burning township beer halls. This caused the ANC Government to come up with a new policy which would balance the economic benefits of the liquor trade with the negative socio-economic consequences of using liquor.

The Contents of the New Liquor Policy

The Liquor Policy includes the following:

The Objects of the Liquor Bill

The main objects of the Bill are to maintain economic unity and crucial national standards in the liquor trade. It further aims to encourage and support the industry, and to manage and reduce the socio-economic and other costs of excessive alcohol consumption by

Establishing Regulating Bodies

The Bill provides for the establishment of a representative National Liquor Advisory Committee (NLAC) which will:

The also provides for the National Liquor Authority which will:

Provincial Liquor Authorities will be established by the Act which will also deal with the above functions and report to the Department of Trade and Industry.

Democratising the Liquor Industry