News & events


02 November 2020

South Africa: In the Belly of South Africa’s Alcohol Beast

The country has always had a drinking problem, but the pandemic-prompted alcohol bans – and their aftermath – have lifted the veil on just how dysfunctional we are.

In the beginning there was booze. The first cargo of slaves brought to the Cape – 174 souls stolen from Angola – arrived on the Dutch East India Company ship Amersvoort on 28 March 1658.

Those are the World Health Organization (WHO) figures for South Africans aged 15 and over. Thing is, according to the Human Sciences Research Council, some of us start drinking at 10.

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