Limpopo’s Tourism department says that the liquor act should not be seen as a deterrent for tourists to visit the province.
Tourism authorities were speaking during the launch of Tourism Month in Lephalale. This amid a new curfew on the sale of alcohol in the province that sees a two-hour reduction on the sale of alcohol.
Currently, the Liquor Traders Association and the Department of Economic Development, Environment and Tourism are in the High Court in Polokwane battling it out.
MEC Rodgers Monama says the act can still be reviewed if people provide genuine reasons.
“We have launched what we called the Limpopo Provincial Liquor Act, not a curfew on the tourists. This is not cast in stone. As soon as the act is implemented, the MEC now has the responsibility. If there is an outcry, we can review the regulation, it is doable, but people must advance genuine reasons as to why we should…there is a special dispensation for the entertainment outlets.”
Increase in domestic tourism
In the tourism industry, the province has enthralling landscapes, captivating wildlife and historic sites.
Chairperson of the board of the Limpopo Tourism Agency, Andrew Dipela says there is an increase of domestic tourism.
“We are receiving an increase in terms of domestic tourists. There is now a strategy in terms of international tourists. We have jumped pre-COVID numbers we are now on new numbers. We are happy hence.”
While the department is adamant that the liquor sale regulations are not set in stone, those in the tourism sector say the sale of alcohol is a big ticket in the sector.
Restaurant manager at Palala Boutique Game Lodge, Mkhululi Makone, believes that alcohol contributes to the increase in tourists.
“You can’t have adventure without alcohol, will you? So, if you take away the alcohol, you take away the tourism industry. So, you cannot run tourism without alcohol. Alcohol is a major factor in our industry, it’s a major revenue generator and we cannot run away from that factor.”
Tourism month runs from the 1st of September to the 30th.
VIDEO | Liquor traders in Limpopo battle it out in court against midnight curfew:
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