The imposition of ban on alcohol as part of lockdown to stem the spread of coronavirus since March 27 has significantly decreased crime rate in South Africa, according to the Zimeye, an online publication quoting Minister of Police Gen. Bheki Cele.
“My first prize would be that we shut down alcohol, but I know we cannot do that. Nothing tells me that taking alcohol will make life easier,” said the minister.
Cele said that the ban on alcohol will not be eased soon. He wished the restriction on alcohol to continue even after the 21-day lockdown period comes to an end.
“It is a known thing that alcohol generates crime. We have found that crimes like murder and sexual abuse usually starts on Thursday until the end of the weekend. Those people will be found at alcohol outlets,” he told the City-Press website during a recent interview.
Cele also defended his government’s decision to ban cigarettes as a part of lockdown, according to the website.
According to the U.S.-based John Hopkins Coronavirus Resource Center, South Africa has reported 1,655 COVID-19 cases with 11 deaths.
The worldwide death toll has risen above 70,000, while confirmed cases are now over 1.28 million, according to the Johns Hopkins data.