Hotel/Beer and Liquor Proprietors Association in Sabon Gari Local Government, Zaria, Kaduna State, on Tuesday accused the Chairman of the Council, Engr Mohammed Ibrahim Usman of changing stands on sales of liquor in the area.
This was coming after he was alleged to have ordered the demolition of local drinks market called Kasuwan Dole in Dushi Waje, Sabon-Gari, Zaria, sealed about 300 beer parlours and enacted a By-law which appeared targeted at particular group of people in the local council.
The representatives of the association, Mr Thaddeus Tabugbo, told newsmen that the sealing of beer parlours exercise was based on the order obtained from Magistrate Court under Chief Magistrate Zainab Garba Muhammed.
According to Tabugbo, while they were waiting for approval of the local government to renew their license, the chairman of the council invited them for a meeting where they were slammed down by the Chairman of the council as operating illegal business premises without license and directed officials of the council to go and closedown all hotels and joints until new licenses were obtained.
It was gathered that, the association was in High Court on the matter and obtained a Court injunction restraining the council from implementing the chairman closure order.
The association expressed dismay that while the High Court was yet to deliver the judgement, the council went and obtained an order from Magistrate Court based on Bye-Law of Sabon Gari Local Government 2020, to sealed up all their business premises beginning from Saturday July 18, 2020 till August 2020, when the case will come up for hearing.
Reacting to the By-law, the body reiterated that the council enacted the By-law to stop liquor and spirit dealers from the sale and consumption of alcohol within the area, which faced condemnation from dealers of liquor and spirit in Sabon Gari Local Government area.
The condition attached to the new application form for obtaining the license, made available to journalists by the association, provided that the ward, village head must recommend any applicant to qualified, while the district head name, stamp and signature must be endorsed.
“On the expiration of the 14 days if no objection is received the council may proceed to issue the license but if an objection is raised the applicant shall be informed.
“Upon the receipt of the application representative of the council shall proceed to either issue the license or reject the application and then inform the applicant of the rejection of the application immediately.
“That the liquor/spirit may be consumed within the license premises (meaning that drinking shall not be carried out outside that area). That the liquor/spirit shall not be sold to any person below the age of 18 years.
“That violation of any of the condition of this license shall render it liable of revocation and persecution. That the license shall be subjected to annual renewal”, the application read in part.