Cigarette and alcohol bans get set aside next week, along with other new regulations for Level 2. But, anticipated jubilation’s markedly missing on social media. Perhaps, a lingering mistrust of the NDZ prevents that. In fact, with the extension of the State of Disaster rolled out for another month, there’s no guarantee the decision might not roll back again.
Cigarette and alcohol bans set aside for Level 2 but FITA persists with court
The South Africa public got a terrible shock when the alcohol ban came back with an indefinite time period. To add to the confusion, the decision got reversed on Twitter and then reinstated several hours later. The alcohol ban might be lifted, but the wise ponder for how long.
After all, just four days ago, South Africa.com reported that Minister Dhlamin-Zuma filed a court affidavit defending the merits of the alcohol ban. She claimed, “that the decision to lift it could be rescinded once more in the weeks ahead.”
Plus, Minister Bheki Cele made it clear that he feels the country would be better off without alcohol. So, nobody’s really out of the woods yet. MSN reported that with just hours to spare, Dhlamini-Zuma filed for an extension of the State of Disaster for another month.
They needed that because even Level 2 comes under that regulation. But, it keeps the power of decision in the hands of the NDZ. So, some people remain sceptical. Perhaps that’s why FITA may persist with their appeal against the cigarette ban.
Ban on cigarettes might come back – FITA on their appeal
On July 24. FITA said they intended approaching the Supreme Court of Appeal. It came after the High Court rejected their first case. The appeal got accepted, but they stand to pay for all costs if they don’t continue with it. They could still lose and be liable anyway. But, as of Saturday this week, they intended to carry on with the case according to IOL.
On Twitter, people agree that the case should continue. One person noted, “they must continue and WIN because we all know the chances of them banning it again are strong!”
Clearly, South Africans simply don’t trust what they hear from President Ramaphosa any more. And the fact that Dhlamini-Zuma extended the State of Disaster and not Ramaphosa adds to that feeling.
General scepticism that the cigarette and alcohol bans remain lifted for any length of time, seems a common belief on social media.