The Ministry of Health releases two anti-smoking ads to cut the rate of smoking tobacco in the country.
These adverts are aimed at raising awareness concerning lung cancer and health risk for second-hand smokers. The first advert states that 10% of the six million annual tobacco-related deaths are those of people who do not directly smoke a cigarette or use tobacco.
It shows non-smokers hanging out with friends and acquaintances who are smoking tobacco. It ends with a poignant message “Tobacco Kills. Pay Attention! Don’t trivialise second-hand smoke.”
The second ad drives home the message of smoking tobacco and its health effects such as lung cancer.
On Friday, June 16, 2017, the Ministry of Health launched a campaign to stop smoking in public places. According to a communique by the ministry, people who smoke in public are liable to a fine of at least N50,000 and/or six months in prison. This is according to the Nigeria Tobacco Control Act 2015.
The law will now be enforced as part of the Clean Air Campaign. "The World Health Organisation estimates that worldwide, second-hand tobacco smoke is currently responsible for the deaths of about 600,000 people yearly, 80 percent of which occur in low-income and middle-income countries like Nigeria.
“Smoking in public places is now banned in Nigeria. Section 9 of the Nigeria Tobacco Control Act 2015 stipulates that offenders, once convicted, are liable to a fine of not less than N50,000 or not less than six months’ imprisonment, or both.
“Public places where smoking is prohibited by law in Nigeria include child care facilities, educational facilities, health care facilities, playgrounds/amusement parks, public parks (gardens), stadia, restaurants/bars, public transportation parks and plazas.
“The Federal Ministry of Health is committed to the fight to ensure a tobacco-free Nigeria, and will in the weeks and months ahead actively collaborate with law enforcement agencies to ensure enforcement of the Act, and with the National Assembly to ensure that necessary supporting regulation is passed" reads the communique.