Liquor Trader Associations Unite Against Injustices

Keeping GLF members updated

Institutions are dysfunctional. There is constant chopping and changing of heads of departments and staff. This is happening at provincial level, particularly in Gauteng.

The three spheres of government - national, provincial and local - are interrelated and interdependent. It is government's responsibility to deliver services and improve the lives of all the people in the country.

Economic development is the process by which a nation improves the social well-being of its people. It is the improvement of the standard of living from poor to a better living standard. How can we achieve this if our institutions are dysfunctional? In the Department of Economic Development Gauteng, in particular, the directors do not last long, there’s poor administration and lack of services to the people of Gauteng.

Economic development is the process by which a nation improves the social well-being of its people. It is the improvement of the standard of living from poor to a better living standard.

The government speaks a lot about improving the lives of the people of this country, especially previously disadvantaged groups like Africans, and revitalising the township economy, but there is no implementation. This is because they keep on changing MECs, directors and staff. Today you engage with certain individuals and agree on certain terms, tomorrow that individual is redeployed. This does not help to address issues that are affecting the people of Gauteng Province.

If the three spheres of government are interrelated and interdependent, then why do they have conflicting laws and policies? Some laws that are passed by local government are not consistent with laws that are passed by provincial and national government. These laws should be harmonised.

We live in a province where municipality by-laws differ between metropolitan cities. When you apply for a business licence, the requirements are not the same. Something needs to be done to fix this.

Compatriots and fellow liquor traders, let me share this with you: as a result of dysfunctional institutions, the Liquor Board is failing to address our problems. Instead, they are adding more problems.

Not long ago, we as liquor trader associations engaged with an adviser to the Premier of Gauteng Province, together with Gauteng Liquor Board and town planning officials.

Gauteng Liquor Board and municipalities were ordered to go and fix their houses and render services to the people of this province. To date they have done nothing. Recently, the Liquor Board invited liquor trader associations to a meeting without providing an agenda. This was unprofessional; we had hoped that they would give a reportback of what they were ordered to do. But they came up with a presentation of their plan regarding the High Court judgement on shebeen permits after six months of silence on the matter. To make matters worse, the Liquor Board appointed an ad hoc committee for this meeting and the municipalities brought their subordinates.

Liquor trader associations were angered by this, to a point that the meeting did not live up to expectations.

After realising that time is against everyone involved during these trying times, liquor trader associations of Gauteng Province converged in SAB World of Beer for a strategic meeting to discuss how to comply with the Gauteng Liquor Act as per the court judgement on shebeen permits and the understating of a phased-in approach, where the judgement said the Act seeks to bring in shebeens that had previously been unregulated.

The meeting also discussed engaging municipalities in order to move obstacles in obtaining local authority approval for a business licence. In the meeting, the associations took a resolution to establish a committee comprising of two members from Gauteng Liquor Forum (GLF), two members from Concern Tshwane Liquor Association (CTLA), two members from South African Liquor Traders Association (SALTA), two members from South African Liquor Traders and Hospitality Association (SALTHA) and two members from National Tourism and Hospitality Association (NTHA).

The committee was given a mandate to attend to the following:

  1. Police raids and moratorium.
  2. Succession on shebeen permits.
  3. Municipal engagement and court judgement.
  4. Online application.
  5. Distribution in residential areas.

Fellow liquor traders, unity is very much important, together we can achieve our objectives.

“Let us all live in harmony and prosperity.”