government

Governor Lobong ratifies order banning importation, sale of harmful alcohol

September 13, 2021

The Eastern Equatoria State governor, Louis Lobong, on Friday ratified a gubernatorial executive order banning the importation and consumption of certain alcoholic drinks deemed to be dangerous by the state.

Last month, the state’s council of ministers gave traders a forty-day ultimatum to dispose of the banned alcohol from their stores.

Last week, the state trade minister, Ruth Marious Buga, disclosed that the traders would not be given more time to sell the banned alcohol once the ultimatum elapsed.

Aliardo Lotok, the governor’s press secretary, said the alcoholic drinks that have been banned were responsible for fueling crime and murders in the state.

”You know that the issue of these local brews and some imported liquors are real problems to our people. We realized that it has contributed hugely to murder, to the crimes and every bad act that is taking place in the State,” Lotok said. “This has been the work of the local brewers and some of the harmful imported liquors like the star gin and many others that are dangerous to the health of our people and so the Government found it necessary really to stop the importation, sale of some of these harmful liquors in our State.”

He said the ban was to safeguard the lives and the health of the people.

A businessman, Okimo John Dominic, urged the Government to give the traders more time to sell off their stock to avoid incurring losses.

“They should give us six months before banning this alcohol. Now we are here and the business is not going well compared to the past. We cannot go against the order because the government is above all but they should add for us some months,” Okimo said.

Meanwhile, Peter Bulo Simon, another trader in Torit town, said: “We are implementing this order since they said they are going to ban some drinks because they are harmful to our bodies.”

In the executive order seen by Radio Tamazuj, the banned alcoholic drinks include Takaya (raw undistilled alcohol), Star Gin. Guu (spirits), Empire (sachets), London No.1, Royal Special Gin, Master Gin, B-52 Gin, Bond 7 (Spirit), V&A (Sherry), Royal No.1 Vodka, Cheers Vodka (less than 500 mils), Leading Uganda Waragi (less than 500 mils), Gilbeys Gin (less than 500 mils), Smirnoff Vodka (less than 500 mils), Asmara (Spirit) and Lion Extra Strong Vodka Mix.

The others are, Royal Blue (Spirit), Prime Vodka (Can), White Tusker Vodka (less than 500 mils), Mambuka (Spirit), Premium Vodka (less than 500 mils), Fly Coconut Vodka (less than 500 mils), Prime Kiss Vodka (less than 500 mils), Ice Palace Vodka (less than 500 mils), Prime Vodka (less than 500 mils) Flirat Vodka (less than 500 mils), Gordon Dry Gin (less than 500 mils), The 3 Tigers (Lager beer) and Fun See.

The order also prohibits importation, sale, and consumption of safe instant yeast and super instant yeast.

It also says the importation and sale of harmful alcoholic beverages and fermented yeast not mentioned as well as sugar shall be regulated by the State Ministry of Trade and Industry.

The order adds that bars shall operate from 5 pm to 10 pm on weekdays and operate freely on Saturdays and Sundays and that sale of alcohol and employment of persons under the age of 18 is strictly prohibited.

According to the order, companies or individual suppliers who violate this order shall be fined one million South Sudanese Pounds and face imprisonment.

Meanwhile, owners of bars and shops in violation shall be fined three hundred thousand South Sudanese Pounds and imprisonment, according to the order.

Whereas owners of kiosks (small scale businesses) who violate the order shall be fined one hundred thousand SSP and imprisonment and that Operation and Trading Licenses shall be withdrawn from repeated violators of the order.

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