Ban on cigarette sales leading to confrontation in South Africa

Ban on cigarette sales leading to confrontation in South Africa

Inflated cigarette prices have led to confrontation in South Africa, as smokers are unhappy with illicit cigarette sellers.

Cigarette ban in Cape Town

The Fair-Trade Independent Tobacco Association (Fita) says the ban on tobacco sales during the lockdown has clearly not stopped people from smoking.

A group of people in Cape Town expressed their disdain towards a shop owner.

The residents feel they have supported the shop for many years and do not deserve the inflated cigarette prices.

The Fair-Trade Independent Tobacco Association (Fita)’s challenge on the ban of tobacco products is set to be heard in the High Court in Pretoria on Tuesday.

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Responding to an affidavit from Cooperative Governance Minister Nkosazana Dlamini-Zuma, Fita chair Sinenhlanhla Mnguni said the ban has led smokers to pursue illegal products.

"The contention that smokers, who are admittedly addicted, will simply overcome the addiction and have an alternative available to assist in doing so is simply untenable. History has shown otherwise. In any event, it is not the second respondent's role nor prerogative to stop people from smoking.”

Mnguni said the health hazards associated with the use of tobacco products cannot justify an outright prohibition.

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He believes the ban has turned many South Africans against the lockdown.

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