Tobacco association heads to court to fight ban

File: The sale of tobacco is still prohibited during the lockdown.

File: The sale of tobacco is still prohibited during the lockdown.

Flickr/Lindsay Fox

JOHANNESBURG - The Fair Trade Independent Tobacco Association heads to court on Tuesday.

It wants the ban on the sale of tobacco products declared invalid.

The association says it does not deny the health risks of tobacco but says the ban has not stopped people from smoking.

READ: Smokers ready for a puff

It says the ban has increased the black market cigarette trade.

This was echoed by South African Revenue Service Commissioner Edward Kieswetter, who says the illicit trade is thriving.

Kieswetter says government lost R300-million in taxes through the ban in April alone.

READ: Ramaphosa part of decision to ban sale of tobacco products

In her affidavit, filed in Pretoria on Friday, Corporative Governance Minister Nkosazana Dlamini-Zuma said that there was nothing sinister about the decision to continue the ban.

Dlamini-Zuma made the announcement after President Cyril Ramaphosa announced tobacco sales would be allowed under lockdown Level 4.

- Coronavirus Hotline Number: 0800 029 999 from 8am to 4pm, Monday to Friday.

Help protect your loved ones by sharing this official South African government COVID-19 service with your family, friends and community.

Send HI to 0600 123 456 on WhatsApp.

The NICD has another Clinician Hotline to improve #COVID19 communication and support for healthcare providers. The Clinician Hotline is 0800 11 1131, operating 24 hrs. The Public Hotline is 0800 029 999 also operating 24hrs.

Source
eNCA