Lusaka Mayor Miles Sampa has closed and revoked the operation licence for the famous Clans bar and night club in Libala for operating beyond the stipulated time.
And Sampa has warned that all bar operators, employees as well as bar patrons who will be found in the bars outside the stipulated time will be arrested.
He said this when he inspected some bars in Kabwata constituency, Monday.
“We are at Clans in Libala. There has been complaints from residents that this bar opens early in the morning as early as 09:00 hours and then doesn’t close the whole night and makes a lot of noise for neighbours. That is public nuisance. And the license given by the Lusaka City Council to restaurants and bars, you are supposed to open at [11:00 hours] but there is a complaint [that] you open at 09:00 hours. So those that are opening bars early and closing them outside [the] stipulated time. The bar owners and those working in those bars, the council will be arresting them, even the patrons, those who go to drink early before time is allowed for drinking, they are also accomplice to breaking the law. So this is an example to all the bars in Lusaka,” Sampa said.
And Sampa said those who play very loud music were not an exception.
“Those who play too loud music, there is a heap of complaints in my office for nuisance noise making at the bars in all the constituencies of Lusaka. Complaints are coming from Matero, Kalingalinga, Mtendere, Chawama, Avondale, Libala and so we’ve started with Libala and we are giving an example. Any bar owner who doesn’t respect the law and doesn’t respect any neighbourhood and residents, making noise and also starting to open bars at 09:00 hours drinking alcohol, it is illegal. You should check your license. So here at Clans, the council has revoked the license. We have closed this bar until we are satisfied with their paper work, until we are satisfied that the management will start obeying the guidelines of the council,” Sampa said.
He said despite people using their money to drink, it was important that they engaged in productive activities during the day and drink later at a stipulated time.
“And this is a warning to everyone going to drink alcohol in the morning at the bars outside regulations, you will also be arrested because you are the ones supporting these bar owners to break the law. And what are you doing buying early in the morning, I know it’s your money [but] what are you doing drinking alcohol at ten o’clock instead of working or doing something constructive? At least go to a bar during regulated time zones. So even all those bars that remain open in Kalingalinga around 04hrs-05hrs, we will also move in there and close them,” Sampa said.
Sampa said the complaint about Clans’ lack of adhering to council regulations had reached higher offices including that of Home Affairs Minister Stephen Kampyongo.
“So in this bar, we are leaving the council police, we have closed it until further notice, for breaking the law, for drinking beer in the morning and playing loud music for residents. This complaint had reached higher level, it reached Home Affairs [Hon] Kampyongo and he complained to me about this and indeed I had to respond quickly to ensure that we maintain law and order in the city of Lusaka. So this is the start not the end. We will be closing all the bars that are not adhering to council regulations and that are encouraging drinking alcohol outside normal stipulated time, and that are playing loud music disturbing the neighbours and being a public nuisance. And these people will be taken to court, prosecuted and the judge will make a ruling on them, we have a court at the council. So immediately the council officials please ensure that these people are taken to court, preferably today so that the judge will tell us what to do with them,” Sampa said.
And Sampa ordered his council officials to locate the owner of Clans only identified as a Mrs Mutemwa so that she could be charged for an offense.
“And let the owner also be located. So include Mrs Mutemwa (owner of the bar) also to the case, and the workers and those who were drinking also so that we have law and order. The President of Zambia Mr Edgar Changwa Lungu wants law and order in the city. Anyone that breaks the law, as a council we will move in, in the bars, bus stops or markets. Our priority now is stop these bars that are making noise with music and are intoxicating people outside regulations hours,” said Sampa