NAIROBI, Kenya, Jul 23-The Pubs Entertainment and Restaurant Association of Kenya has opposed reports of a planned ban on the sale of alcohol to sit-in customers.
The association Chairperson Alice Opee says that the proposed law by the ministry of health will also affect eateries who spent thousands of shillings while reopening.
“We have noted based on the propaganda and drafts that has come out as a measure to curb this problem, we emphasize that it has cost us a lot of money in the recent past to reopen the restaurants, we are not interested in flouting the laws,” said Opee.
At the same time the lobby group fears that the move will push restaurants to further losses, where the players report that they had lost more than Sh10 billion by end of June 2020.
“By end of June we had lost almost Sh15 billion and after reopening an average outlet invested from Sh200,0000 to Sh500,000, some of them have gone as far as spending Sh 1 million,” Opee added.
The pubs and restaurant owner’s plea come after reports on COVID-19 rules revealed that the ministry of health proposes the banning on the sale of alcohol to sit in customers in business.
Health Cabinet Secretary Mutahi Kagwe had warned bar owners found violating COVID-19 regulations that their licenses will be revoked, and their places closed indefinitely.
Kagwe said that some individuals had resorted to open in the disguise of operating restaurants.
“Bars are not opened. We have seen some people now pretending that theirs are restaurants while they are not. Those are the kind of activities that make us take stringent measures to close those bars. We shall close them indefinitely,” Kagwe said.
Should the law be approved, it will also require that restaurants, eateries, bars, food courts, entertainment joints, supermarkets, wines and spirits shops only deal with take away drinks.
Those that are selling alcohol would operate between 9am and 7:30pm.
In the regulations, a person would not be permitted to consume alcohol in public spaces such as restaurants, parking lots, eateries, bar, entertainment joints, supermarkets or wines, and spirits shop.
As at Wednesday, Kiambu County Governor James Nyoro has ordered the closure of all wines and spirits in the county by July 24.