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ENYOBENI TAVERN SHUT DOWN FOLLOWING DEATHS OF 21 TEENAGERS

The Eastern Cape Liquor Board (ECLB) has on Monday shut down the Enyobeni tavern in Scenery Park, in East London, pending investigations into the deaths of 21 teenagers.

They died at an event held at the venue over the weekend.

Police are investigating what could have led to the deaths.

Until then, the tavern’s doors will remain closed.

The owner’s wife Vuyokazi Ndevu was served with the papers confirming the closure of their business – which is now a crime scene.

The liquor board’s Zola Tyikwe said the owners broke the law.

“In terms of our act, no one is allowed to sell liquor to underage persons. And any person who has done so is in transgression with the law and that transgression is a prosecutable offence – so it is a criminal act,” said Tyikwe.

Investigations into the mass death are now underway as families come to terms with the tragic event.

The community in the area claimed that the ECLB was supplying licences to tavern owners who sold alcohol to teenagers.

Pushing back, the board said they had minimum human resources to keep a close eye on compliance.

ECLB spokesperson Mgwebi Msiya said the were 16 inspectors tasked with monitoring 7,500 liquor outlets in the province.

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