“If fewer South Africans smoke, then the consumer demand for illicit cigarettes will fall and this will be accomplished by a decline in the illicit trade.”
Wasserman said it is impossible for the government’s reasons and record in respect of the level 3 tobacco ban “to be properly prepared before Wednesday and incorporated into the minister’s answering affidavit in the Fita matter. Especially given the pressures the minister is under to manage the national state of disaster.
According to Wasserman, “if reasons and a record are not filed in the Fifa application in respect of Regulation 45, this court will have less information on which to determine the lawfulness of Regulation 45 than the Western Cape Division of the High Court”.
“This is undesirable as it may lead to inconsistent judgments and to unnecessary appeals.”
Fita chair Sinenhlanhla Mnguni told Business Day on Tuesday that the association would “strenuously oppose” the government’s efforts to further delay the hearing of its case.
“This case has been delayed enough,” he said.
On Friday, Fita contended that Dlamini-Zuma’s attitude in relation to the impact of the ban both on smokers and SA’s growing illicit tobacco industry was “high-handed and amounts to executive overreach”.
Mnguni said the ban was “out of step with the vast majority of countries throughout the world” and has slammed the government for its alleged failure to rationally explain why it imposed the ban in the first place.