According to News24, Cooperative Governance Minister Nkosazana Dlamini-Zuma has once again objected the President’s call to open up a few more industries, especially the sale of alcohol and cigarettes. The minister allegedly told the National Coronavirus Command Council (NCCC) that the sale of tobacco and alcohol should continue to be banned until the country reaches Level 1 of the lockdown.
It is said that the Minister believes it would be too much of a health risk to allow the sale of cigarettes and alcohol on 1 June when the country is expected to go to Level 3 of the nationwide lockdown – and her stance was supported by Home Affairs Minister Aaron Motsoaledi.
This objection by Dlamini-Zuma allegedly sparked a debate in the meeting chaired by President Cyril Ramaphosa, where she came prepared with academic papers that argued against the sale of tobacco and alcohol during the Covid-19 pandemic, citing the health risks.
Those who opposed the proposal led by Dlamini-Zuma argued that a pandemic was not the right time to make policy decisions, as both the tobacco and alcohol industries were not banned – they were simply regulated. There was no resolution to the matter.
While some people think the Dlamini-Zuma is being as a scapegoat for political reasons, others were infuriated by the possibility of another u-turn on lifting the ban on cigarettes, and alcohol.
Niyaqala futhi!! Why couldn't the source be pressed on what were the views of the President? Who opposed this proposal and for what reasons? This article is setting up NDZ as a villain who comes armed with academic articles against intellectually defenceless cabinet colleagues. https://t.co/nrbghCVfnm— Lukhona Mnguni (@LukhonaMnguni) May 22, 2020
Media is rented to tarnish her name. They want to turn everyone against her. They continue to insult our intelligence so that they can give Ramaphosa gold medal— NotYetUhuru (@THABANG_BELANG) May 22, 2020
This woman is making money from the illegal trade of tobacco and alcohol – why would she want it to end when she is making a killing at the expense of non-alcohol drinkers non-smokers who will have to foot the tax lost bill when it all comes down to it – #NCCCThieves…— Rhett (@rhettcawood) May 22, 2020
The continued push for the ban of tobacco and alcohol ban until Level 1 has nothing to do with Covid-19 ,It is actually an abuse of the Covid-19 situation(Lockdown regulations). #dlaminizuma— Mabade (@MabadeMkhonto) May 22, 2020