The National, Wednesday 28th December 2011
By ELIAS LARI
THE provincial executive council in Western Highlands has banned the sale of liquor in the province.
The one-year ban was effective from last Friday.
The province joins neighbouring Southern Highlands and Enga where indefinite liquor bans are in place.
The WHP decision was made by the provincial executive council which said it had taken the authority from the provincial liquor licensing board and imposed the one-year ban to December 2012.
Only hotels, lodges and motels are allowed to sell alcohol but with strict guidelines.
Governor Tom Olga admitted that the ban would affect small operators and apologised for it. But he said alcohol had caused a lot of problems in the province.
Olga said it was the best way to reduce the law and order problem in the province.
Olga said: “I understand that this is business and it is where some people make their income to support their families but from the public view, people are abusing it and they do not know how to behave when under the influence of alcohol.”
He said it was the only way to do away with alcohol-related problems and change people’s attitude.
Liquor outlets other than hotels, lodges and motels will be allowed to sell whatever liquor is in stock. This will be closely monitored by the council.
Olga said the ban would affect job opportunities and businesses but the public needed to appreciate that liquor was the root cause of many social ills.
He said small operators must stop selling liquor and police had been advised to monitor this.
“We will only allow hotels, lodge and motels to sell. Apart from them no one is allowed to make any sales of alcohol in the province,” Olga said.