President Cyril Ramaphosa has confirmed his attendance at the mass funeral of the 21 people who died at the Enyobeni Tavern in East London. This mass funeral will take place on Wednesday, with a large marquee erected in an open field at Scenery Park.
A week and a half has passed since the tragic death of the teenagers, but there is still no information on the cause of death.
Buffalo Municipality Deputy Mayor Princess Faku says many dignitaries will attend the funeral.
“The premier of the province will be present, the president will be here. The SA Minister of Police, the Minister of Social Development and other Ministers. As you can see, even today the portfolio committee of women, youth, children and people with disabilities are here engaging with the community.”
Buffalo City Metro is investigating whether the tavern’s structure meets safety regulations:
Meanwhile, officers from Buffalo City Metro and the Eastern Cape Liquor Board made surprise visits to liquor stores in the Scenery Park area to check compliance with their operating licences. The visit aims to inform tavern owners about their roles and responsibilities.
It is also about raising public awareness about the dangers of alcohol abuse.
The Enyobeni incident sparked a huge debate around underage drinking. Buffalo City Metro and the Eastern Cape Liquor Board are partnering to prevent a repeat of this tragedy.
They visited taverns to check compliance, as Buffalo City Metro Deputy Mayor Princess Faku explains.
“Compliance issues, do you have enough open windows, are there enough exit areas for people to get out, what time do they let people in to sell cigarettes, alcohol and is there an age limit when it comes to that and also them informs, if there is an emergency, which people to call.’
Tavern owner, Thundezile Moya, says it is important to comply with the conditions of operating licenses when running a business.
“It’s very important to be considerate and respectful of your business to keep it running smoothly, although we don’t like to be watched from time to time.”
Patrons also welcomed the initiative. “The problem is that children have so many rights; so it’s easy for them to do whatever they want, the government should limit children’s rights.”
Another patron says; “It is a good initiative, I hope they are not doing it just because of the Enyobeni incident, there should be regular supervision.”