BLOG: The Situation In Southern African Countries Regarding Covid-19 And Alcohol: An Overview

In the face of the COVID-19 pandemic Southern African leaders are making bold political choices to save the lives of their citizenry. One of these choices relates to the prevention and reduction of alcohol harm in the eight Southern African countries.
Aadielah, Maurice and Tunga examine the responses in each of these countries and analyze challenges and opportunities. They also dive into similarities and differences among the countries and expose some of the strategies of the alcohol industry.
In general, their timely blog post illustrates that alcohol is being addressed as a potential obstacle to the effective adoption of the key tools in the fight against COVID-19 – physical distancing and personal (hand) hygiene. To address this problem, there is, in most countries in the region, at least a partial ban on alcohol. Common to almost all is that bars, restaurants and nightclubs are shut down but, in some at least, bottle stores and other retail outlets that sell liquor are allowed to be open for a legislated period of time…

BLOG: The Case for – and Obstacles to – Policy Action To Tackle South Africa’s Alcohol Burden

South Africa is heavily burdened by pervasive alcohol harm. South Africa is also being aggressively exploited by an alcohol industry that seeks to profit from this “emerging” market with its huge population of young people and growing middle-class.
To tackle this perfect storm of alcohol harm, civil society has been and is campaigning for better alcohol laws. In her compelling blog post, Aadielah shows what the opportunities for and benefits of stronger alcohol control would be for people, communities and society. But whether political leaders are hearing it and will act on it, is a different question…