The Western Cape Liquor Authority (WCLA) has probed more than 50 liquor traders for non-compliance with the national disaster regulations by selling alcohol during the lockdown.
As part of the investigations, 20 liquor licences were suspended, Western Cape Community Safety MEC Albert Fritz said on Tuesday. Two reports were being referred to the Liquor Licensing Tribunal for consideration.
Fritz said the 51 investigations were conducted between 23 March and 8 May.
Twelve cases are still under investigation and five have been referred to the police.
“Those whose licences have been suspended will have to appear before the [tribunal] within 21 days after the lockdown period having expired to show cause of why the order should not be made final,” Fritz said in a statement.
“Subsequently, Section 20 hearings will be scheduled where the [tribunal] can revoke the licence or impose a fine of up to R115 610 if the licensee has been found guilty of transgressing any legislation or regulations.”
Fritz warned against the sale of liquor, which may leave vendors at risk of a fine or losing their licence.
“I commend the WCLA in their efforts to stop the illegal sale of alcohol during the lockdown, ensuring the safety of residents in rural and urban communities alike. Liquor licences have been suspended in Vredendal, Clanwilliam, Malmesbury, Gugulethu, Philippi East, St Helena Bay, Bellville South and Lwandle.”
Fritz urged anyone who has information about the illegal sale of liquor during the lockdown to phone the police or contact the WCLA on 021 204 9805 to report the matter.