By ALICE NACHILEMBE
Solwezi Municipal Council (SMC) has closed down a total of 14 Bars in Kazomba and Kyawama areas for failing to meet standards stipulated in the Liquor Licensing Act.
SMC Assistant Public Relations Manager Esther Chirwa said that out of the fourteen, eight had opened their business premises to the public before 10:00 hours which is the stipulated time of opening.
Ms Chirwa said a spot check of Liquor trading premises by Solwezi Municipal Council Public Health Inspectors and Council Police Officers further revealed that most of the premises were operating without the required and valid documents such as the Health Inspection Certificate, Business Levy, Fire Certificate and the Liquor trading License while others did not display them in visible locations.
She said Business personnel and the public in general should note that it is illegal for one to operate without all the required trading licenses respective to each type of business.
Ms Chirwa said that It is also an offence for one to operate a business without displaying a particular license in a prominent place for Health Inspectors and members of the public in general to see.
“The public should also know that there are specific permitted trading hours that have been prescribed for the sell of Liquor as follows: Bars: 10:00 – 22:00 hours, Bottle Stores: 10:00 – 24:00 hours, Night Clubs/Social Club 10:00 – 24:00 hours and Wholesale Liquor selling: 08:00 – 18:00 hours,” she said.
She said Businesses operating without licenses and those whose licenses have expired are encouraged to come through to the Council and make all the necessary payments to avoid being inconvenienced.
“The Council will continue conducting random compliance checks on a daily basis and if a business premise is found wanting, penalties will be instituted in accordance with provisions of the law,” she said.