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Parties aggravate business owners
06 September 2018

The regular month-end parties in Central Park, Welkom, have owners of businesses in the area furious.

Except for the fact that party-goers are loud and abuse alcohol, they urinate against businesses’ walls in the surrounding areas and they get aggressive.

“It’s absolutely shocking how the regular month-end parties in Central Park, Stateway, get out of hand,” says Arrie Abatzoglou, owner of The Strip in Welkom.

“The spring party of Saturday (01/09) was a disaster. Underaged children were so drunk that they barely could stand on their own feet.”

“One drunk youngster ended up underneath a parked vehicle and was almost driven over. Another one was stabbed.”

Business owners are worried that this kind of behaviour will scare their customers away. Except for the abusive drinking and misbehaviour, regular clients complain they feel unsafe in the area.

Although the spring party was being monitored by police, no law enforcement has been applied.

Drinking in public is an offence under the common law and the Liquor Act of South Africa.

“In South Africa the legal age for consuming alcohol is 18 years and most of the youngsters that attended the spring party was underaged and drunk,” says Abatzoglou.

It seems that the legislation for being drunk in public and the use of alcohol in public places no longer applies.

Business owners are pleading with authorities to take control of these parties for the safety of the community and businesses.

Capt. Stephen Thakeng, police spokesperson, says the South African Police Service takes note of the concerns raised.

Lengthy discussion with several stakeholders, including the Matjhabeng municipal manager, law enforcers and security companies will take place to ensure the safety of residents and to restrict learners from these parties.

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