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Thank you for not smoking.

The days of smoking outside your office or in restaurants in the city of Cape Town, might soon be over.

30 Mar 2007

In a dramatic turn of events, a severe anti-smoking bill is under revision by the city council that will make it almost impossible for smokers to either smoke outside or in restaurants.

"It is time to clamp down on this filthy habit and make smokers pay for the health risk they are inflicting on themselves and innocent bystanders," said Gunston Mashango the chairman of the Anti-Smoking Association for Non-Smokers (ASANS).

The bill is loosely based on an ASANS action document that was presented to the council in December 2006. If the bill is passed, anti-smoking officers will be patrolling the inner-city, handing out fines to smokers within a five feet radius of non-smokers. This will be followed by legal action if the transgressor is fined more than three times a week. The illegal smoker will be photographed and given a "Smoker ID" this will go into a national database. They can either pay the fine with their credit card or with cash on the spot.

"We have approached the Provincial Health Department and they have also given us a vote of confidence. They are very excited about the fine system we are proposing for restaurants." added Mashango.

According to this document, patrons in the smoking section, will now have a hefty 25% added to their bill. If they only have drinks, they will have 15% added on. This money will be pumped back into cancer research and use to train anti-smoking officers for Cape Town.

Restaurants will also have two anti-smoking officers on their premises to ensure that restaurant owners, managers and staff follow the letter of the law.

Food24 wishes all its readers a Happy April Fool's Day.


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