By: Natasha Archary
The legal drinking age in South Africa could be changed from 18 to 21. This comes after the Liquor Amendment Bill first made the consideration public in 2016.
In a move to tighten the complications from COVID-19 medical trauma, cabinet is reportedly revisiting the amendment.
Extending the drinking age in South Africa is one of the measures to curb alcohol abuse. This morning Kaya Breakfast touched on the possibility of the change in legal drinking age and what this would mean going forward.
Changes to the bill
Should the bill come into effect it would bring with it the following changes:
- Changing the legal drinking age from 18 to 21 years
- Introducing a 100m restriction on alcohol reselling around educational and religious facilities
- Banning alcohol sales and advertising on social and small media
- A new liability clause for the sale of alcohol
The amendment to the bill has received support from Cooperative Governance and Traditional Affairs Minister, Nkosazana Dlamini-Zuma who is keen on the age limit restriction being implemented.
The Minister and government are currently dealing with the legalities around the Level 3 alcohol ban that was lifted at the end of January.
The Southern African Alcohol Policy Alliance (SAAPA SA) is in agreement with the introduction of stronger alcohol policies, if it means another alcohol ban will be avoided.
The group are aggravated with government’s handling of the alcohol bans which cost the alcohol industry millions in revenue and thousands of job losses.
Should a third wave strike, it would mean another alcohol ban to assist with the pressure on public and private hospital capacity.