Khume Ramulifho MPL
DA Gauteng Legislature
In reply to a Democratic Alliance question in the Gauteng Provincial Legislature, MEC for Community Safety Faith Mazibuko has indicated that police confiscated liquor worth more than R3 250 000 in January and February 2012. They also confiscated 2895 other items including fridges, tables and chairs in the same period.
The DA tabled questions after communities from Meadowlands complained at a public meeting, that they are targeted by police. They alleged that they are harassed if they don’t pay bribes to police in order to secure their liquor and other items. In January and February this year the rand value of items confiscated in Meadowlands alone was more than R1.5 million, and about 251 confiscations took place at outlets that were trading without a license or out of trading hours.
Raids also take place frequently in Edenpark, Kliptown, Alexandra, Katlehong, Temba, Hammanskraal, Hillbrow, Akasia, Tokoza, Primrose, Germiston and Diepkloof.
The MEC failed to answer a question about the number of complaints laid against police who confiscate liquor from owners who have valid licenses and who operate within the confines of the Gauteng Liquor Act of 2003.
The DA will urge the Gauteng Provincial Government to engage with liquor traders and explain the liquor trading procedures to them before simply confiscating their items. Complaints of police abuse must be dealt with speedily and honestly.
It is important that owners of registered liquor outlets feel assured that they can operate without fear of police victimisation.