Stellenbosch Umasipala

Mayor Conrad Sidego met with industry stakeholders at the South African Leisure Tourism and Hospitality Association (SALTHA) conference at Spier. The Imbizo was held in co-operation with the Industry Association for Responsible Alcohol Use (ARA). The Imbizo is a platform for tavern owners and role players to discuss issues of responsible alcohol selling, liquor licensing and problems of alcohol abuse.

The mayor welcomed participants to the Imbizo taking place in the heart of the Cape Winelands: considered to be the capital of the South African wine industry with more than 60 estates operating in this leading centre for viticulture and viticulture research. He further added that the wine industry added to this buoyant regional and national sector of the economy but also stressed the importance of the shared responsibility of all stakeholders in education, information sharing and character leadership.

Stakeholders who were in discussion and presentation sessions were Dr Osborn Mahanjana (ARA CEO), Mr Churchill Mrasi (SALTHA President), Mrs Leana Olivier (FARR CEO, Foundation for Alcohol Related Research), Lieutenant-General Arno Lamoer (SAPS Police Commissioner), Ms Masechaba Sefulano (|Programme Director, SALTHA), Mongezi Memani (Nafcoc Western Cape (National African Federated Chamber of Commerce and Industry), Monga Phaladi (Saltha Secretary General), Philip Prinsloo (WC Liquor Board) and Cllr Siyabulela Mamkeli (MMC City of Cape Town).

The main focus for discussion was the promotion of responsible selling and consumption of alcohol. It was highlighted that tavern owners play an important role in communities and share in the responsibility of responsible retailing and can play a significant role in curbing alcohol abuse in communities. Stakeholders also agreed that awareness about responsible drinking and selling of liquor was a shared responsibility and that with co-operation, communication and information sharing safety of lives, places and movement can be ensured.

A pledge was signed with 200 licenced tavern owners from the Western Cape to abide by the Code of Practice drafted by the Industry Association for Responsible Alcohol Use (ARA). The code promotes the responsible sale of alcoholic beverages by encouraging taverners to refuse the sale of alcohol to underage minors, pregnant women and patrons already visibly intoxicated.