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Monday, 19 March 2012

Banning Tujiliji

Government appears intent on banning “Tujilijili”, atleast according to Local Govt Minister Nkandu Luo :
We shall not employ a piecemeal approach. The approach is to ban the production, ban the distribution and ban the consumption. As I had said in my earlier reply, we can also have a campaign in the communities and conversations with people to start addressing issues to do with, not only tujilijili, but also other alcohols. You may wish to know that even the producers are very worried. They have even been to my office to try and discuss with me issues to do with tujilijili. I have comprehensively studied issues to do with tujilijili. I have seen the distraction the tujilijili are doing to people in a number of communities. I have also been to Chainama Hospital, Block B, to see how young people’s lives have been curtailed. They will never have a chance to be like you and myself. I am very keen to not only enforce the law, but also to look at the distribution, production and the consumption of alcohol.
This appears to be the usual typical knee jerk reaction that we have come to expect from Zambian politicians. Its not that banning it has no merit, it is just that her assessment is one dimensional. It does not take on board broader questions. For example, wont banning it simply divert policing, court and jail resources from serious crimes ? It takes many months, sometimes years, before individuals see the light of day in court. Do we really need petty crimes like this one to add further pressure on our paralysed legal system? Crucially, is banning it the only way forward? As the debate here revealed, the issues are rather more complicated than Nkandu Luo thinks. 

Incidentally, the questions which we have previously discussed in the context of Kachasu also applies here. 

1 comment:

  1. Banning something doesn't usually stop it. Isn't taxing it heavily more effective?
    Better enforcement of existing laws on sale to under 18's and sale without alchohol licenses might also help.


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