We knew something didn’t feel right about this whole debacle. But, once they’d sent most South Africans into a rage on Wednesday afternoon, the government’s official Twitter account has sheepishly issued a correction, after they had initially stated that alcohol and cigarettes would stay banned ‘throughout lockdown’.
Our current lockdown system is likely to last until 2021, so drinkers and smokers were left fearing that they couldn’t get their hands on the good stuff until some point next year.
The announcement caused carnage, with politicians and industry professionals blowing a gasket with their reaction to the statement. One politician even suggested the twin prohibitions were orchestrated by Nkosazana Dlamini-Zuma, whos has previously been influential in banning both booze and ciggies.
Shortly before 17:00, the offending Twitter account stated that the initial post was incorrect. Although they maintained that bans on alcohol and cigarette purchases could be made ‘at any time’, the reiterated that both items are likely to remain off-limits under the current Level 3 regulations:
“This account posted a tweet earlier today which said that the ban on the sale of alcohol and cigarettes would remain in place throughout the lockdown period. This is incorrect. The sale of alcohol and tobacco products is prohibited under the current Level 3 regulations.”
“This decision may be reviewed at any time by the relevant structures should the conditions which necessitated it change. We regret any confusion the tweet has caused.”SA Government
Both items are still banned, but there is hope that changes in government policies, legal cases, and lockdown Alert Phases will bring them back. But did the apology go down well with the prominent figures of the nation? Did it hell. The phrase ‘lead balloon’ springs to mind…
Thank you for clarifying. But please don’t just tweet without proper facts— Yusuf Abramjee (@Abramjee) July 22, 2020
We don’t believe anything they say anymore! How was this “mistake” made? They must stop treating us like kids. https://t.co/HwX5yvfise— Sinenhlanhla Mnguni (@SinenMnguni) July 22, 2020
This is garbage. The government has shown its hand, seen the massive blowback from citizens and now wants us to believe it’s fake news! They will not lift the ban on alcohol and tobacco for as long as the lockdown is in play! Take them at their word people! https://t.co/1BXdbJcMPc— Dean Macpherson MP ?? (@DeanMacpherson) July 22, 2020