Tobacco association to fight cigarettes ban in court

Government has made a U-turn on the sale of cigarettes citing health reasons. Last night Minister of Cooperative Governance and Traditional Affairs Nkosazana Dlamini-Zuma said smoking posed more risk in the spread of COVID-19. Courtesy #DStv403

JOHANNESBURG - The Fair Trade Independent Tobacco Association (Fita) says it will be proceeding with legal action regarding the government’s decision to ban the sale of cigarettes.

READ: Revised level four lockdown regulations

On Wednesday night, Minister of Cooperative Governance and Traditional Affairs Nkosazana Dlamini-Zuma said smoking posed great risks in the spread of COVID-19.

This after President Cyril Ramaphosa said that sales would be allowed from 1 May.

READ: Tobacco association fired-up over cigarette ban

Now the government has changed its mind about the sale of tobacco products during level four.

According to the national coronavirus command council, after serious consultations and opposition from the public, they've decided against selling cigarettes, e-cigarettes and tobacco products.

"We had a meeting with our legal team this morning the decision and was unanimous and we will be proceeding with the legal steps in as far as the decision that was made yesterday evening by Minister of Cooperative Governance and Traditional Affairs,” said Fita's Sinenhlanhla Mnguni.

“This is off the back of the proposed legal action which we intended on doing in the course of last week however we were advised then to withdraw application as the President was due to announce the sale of cigarettes. 

“The announcement was made so we were taken aback by the decision by the minister so yes, yes we will be proceeding with legal actions."

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Source
eNCA