As the Christmas and New Year seasons draw closer, the Liberian government through the Ministry of Commerce and Industry has announced that all mechanisms have been put into place to monitor activities at various drinking spots believed to be notorious.
According to Commerce Minister Miata Beslowe, those entertainment centers include but are not limited to, Exodus on Gurley Street, Patience Entertainment Center, Parker Paint, Airfield Road, View Point, 77 Gardnerville, Club 64, and New Georgia amongst others.
Speaking at a news conference in Monrovia, the Commerce boss said that the intent of the monitoring of those alleged notorious entertainment spots is to keep minors off the streets and prevent them from taking alcoholic beverages during the holiday.
“The problem of alcoholic abuse amongst youths requires a comprehensive public health response that addresses various marketing tools like pricing, easy availability and type of productions, those companies can use to make it easier for younger people drink. We therefore believe that issuing these liquor regulations is just the first step in the right direction.” She said.
She indicated that in order to enforce the mandate of the Unity Party led government, there will be inspectors and police officers at those selected centers, “so that during the holiday season and thereafter, inspectors will be assigned to places of entertainment beginning 4:00pm Christmas eve through the day and similar measure will be applied during the New Year holiday. The new alcoholic regulations will also make it unlawful to sell liquor to minors and also make it unlawful for minors to purchase liquor.” She added.
Minister Besylow indicated that driving under the influence of alcohol will be dealt with by the police. She stressed that the new regulations will affect the advertising of in a way that specifically targets minors.
“Advertising includes not just radio, television, and bill boards, but also sponsored of events, product placement and promotional activities specifically targeted at youths. Our intention is to ban those irresponsible advertising part that promotes alcohol consumption as a normal and integral part of young people’s lives and cultures”, she indicated.