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Trading hours violation invites crime.

The contravention of liquor trading laws is tantamount to inviting crime, Senior Superintendent Agreement Mapeu has said.

Speaking at a crime prevention meeting in Serowe, noted that some businesses traded beyond the stipuated times.

At those times, he said, criminals were aware of the limited movement outside the bar and could therefore easily pounce on the trader and walk away with cash.

Mr Mapeu revealed that when attacked, contraveners of the trading hours regulations hid behind the trauma and pretended not to know the time of the incident.

The police chief warned bar owners who operated earlier and beyond the legal trading hours that they would be arrested.

Mr Mapeu informed the gathering that he had dispatched teams to carry out sting operations in his jurisdiction.

These teams, he said, would raid liquor depots amongst other alcohol trading spots.

Another government official, Ms Kabo Fidzani of the Central District Council reiterated Mr Mapeu's findings about non-compliance to liquor trading hours.

She warned those trading without licenses that their goods would be confiscated as evidence and even retained as council property.

Ms Fidzani also warned bar owners who rented out their premises to dsist from such a practice.

Ms Fidzani expressed concern over employment of people not conversant with trade regulations such that during inspections byelaw officers struggled to get answers pertaining to the cleanliness of presmises and or lack thereof.

Often queries were directed to the manager who would by then not be available, she said.

Ms Fidzani said employing workers who were not conversant with business operations could attract penalties.

At bottle stores, Ms Fidzani observed that some customers bought and consumed alcohol at the premises which she said was unlawful.

She observed that on weekends customers often purchased and drank alcohol at bottle stores while waiting for bars to open.

'The responsibility of adherence to license requirements lies with the business owner,' said Ms Fidzani.

In such a scenario, she said, both the business owner and the person caught drinking at a bottle store would face the wrath of the law.

Ms Fidzani said it was common on holidays for bars to contravene trading hours with owners arguing that people found drinking at their premises brought the liquor from elsewhere.

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Publication:Botswana Daily News (Gaborone, Botswana)
Date:Aug 27, 2018
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