Police minister Bheki Cele has explained being in a position of cigarettes is not crime, you will have to produce receipts for them.
“If you are having it in your pocket whether in large or small quantities we would like to see the evidence of where you got it,” he said.
Minister Cele said police had the right to ask people for a receipt and that this was done to ensure the cigarettes were not purchased illegally or stolen.
“Cigarettes are not banned from being smoked they are banned from being sold.
“We would like to see where you got your cigarettes. Police have the right to ask you if you were at a roadblock where you got this item,” he said.
The minister was speaking at a taxi rank in KwaDukuza, north of Durban.
He and KwaZulu-Natal premier Sihle Zikalala, with health MEC Nomagugu Simelane-Zulu and transport MEC Bheki Ntuli, conducted walkabouts and roadblocks in the iLembe district, a Covid-19 hotspot.
Minister Cele reiterated that he did not hate alcohol but was concerned about its effects on crime and the health system.
“I do not hate alcohol, I do not care about alcohol. What I care about is that people who take alcohol sometimes become very inconsiderate,” he said.
“We are worried on two fronts: firstly, the crime and the health side. After alcohol sales resume, watch the space, they will begin to shoot each other, butcher one another and stab one another.
“Those people will go occupy very serious spaces of the health sector like theatres and trauma centres, and people that are sick with Covid-19 and ordinary illnesses won’t get space.”
Cele warned that those who do not follow the regulations when it comes to selling alcohol could lose their liquor licences.