WITH the festive season upon us, there’s a greater risk of a Covid-19 second wave hitting Mzansi as people will soon be out having a good time.
It’s feared that many people will be boozing and putting others in danger.
The South Alcohol Policy Alliance has called on government to urgently put alcohol restrictions in place.
Professor Charles Parry, director of the Alcohol, Tobacco and Other Drugs Research Unit at the South African Medical Research Council, also raised these concerns.
“It’s recognised globally that the use of alcohol can be a major contributor to spread of the virus, particularly at parties, street bashes and nightclubs,’’ he said.
“As they drink more, people become less and less inclined to stick to Covid-19 protocols such as wearing of masks.”
He was concerned that drinking over the holidays would cause a spike in infections.
“It’s something we’re already seeing in the Eastern Cape and Western Cape. Health Minister Zweli Mkhize has said people want to go out and enjoy themselves without following containment measures,” he said.
Parry criticised government, saying it didn’t seem to be taking any action.
“We’re very puzzled at how government can say after eight months. with evidence that has been gathered, locally and globally, that there’s no basis to mitigate the excessive use of alcohol,” he said.
He said calling on liquor traders to act responsibly isn’t enough and there should be policing.