- Health Minister Dr Zweli Mkhize has put his weight behind the current ban of cigarettes and alcohol
- The restrictions are a bone of contention for many citizens, but the man leading SA's Covid-19 response has voiced his support
- This comes after President Cyril Ramaphosa stood firm in his resolve to keep the ban in place
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Health Minister Dr Zweli Mkhize is the latest politician to voice his firm support for the ban of cigarette and alcohol sales in South Africa.
The minister explained that these substances have an undeniable impact on the health of people who tested positive for the coronavirus.
With deaths increasing to 52 as the nation enters its fourth week in lockdown, Mkhize added his views to the debate surrounding smoking
"The problem with smoking is that it tends to affect the lining where people breath and creates some reactions. In some instances, it can provoke a reaction where someone's lining is irritated and becomes easy to get infected."
READ ALSO: Covid-19: Ramaphosa snubs Gauteng Liquor Forum's request to end ban
Briefly.co.za reported that President Cyril Ramaphosa had doubled down on the bans after the Gauteng Liquor Board threatened to take the matter to the Constitutional Court.
Ramaphosa reiterated that the decisions made by leadership during this time has firm scientific backing and the alcohol restrictions have been encouraged by the World Health Organisation.
Mkhize also highlighted the risks associated with alcohol use, calling for people to cooperate with the government during this time
"Under the circumstances, we are working in, we really need everyone to cooperate so we can reduce pressure in hospitals and the possibility of people being infected because everyone is taking a very responsible approach when they are in sober senses."
With the virus, all medical personnel need to be at the ready and the minister explained that the alcohol ban had helped reduce the number of people needing hospitalisation
"The less alcohol you have, the less trauma you will find in hospital. There will be less people who have been shot and less people injured from car accidents and people being stabbed. Less alcohol improves the health of individuals."
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