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MPs urged to support Tobacco Products and Nicotine Products


THE University of Zambia Centre for Primary Care Research has urged Members of Parliament to support the Tobacco Products and Nicotine Products Control Bill once tabled before parliament to save lives. And the centre has called on the Ministry of Health to expedite the process of ensuring that the bill is tabled before cabinet for approval and later taken to parliament before the dissolution of parliament on May 12, 2021.

Centre for Primary Care Research leader Professor Fastone Goma said it was important that the bill was supported by the parliamentarians as it will save lives as over 7, 000 people die per year as a result of tobacco use.

Speaking during a media workshop for editors, Prof Goma said it was sad that Zambia has continued to lose so many lives due to tobacco. “If you look at the statistics, every year over 7, 000 people die due to different complications which come as a result of tobacco use.

This is why we are calling for this bill, we need to control the use of tobacco,” Prof Goma said. He said nearly 16.0 percent of Zambians currently consume some form of tobacco products with men being at 24.0 percent while women at 7.8 percent.

Prof Goma said it was important for parliamentarians to support the bill as tobacco use in developing world like Zambia poses a major challenge not only to health but also socioeconomic development and environment sustainability given that people with a low income are more likely to use tobacco which significantly worsen poverty. “We only have now to May 12 before parliament is dissolved.

We are hopeful that the bill will be tabled before parliament and we need parliamentarians to support this document so that it is enacted into law,” he said Prof Goma said once the bill is enacted it would provide for the protection of present and future generations from the devastating, health, social, environmental and economic consequences of tobacco consumption, nicotine addiction and exposure to the harmful emissions of tobacco products, tobacco devices, nicotine products and nicotine devices.

He also said that the bill also seeks to prevent user initiation, continually and substantially reduce consumption of tobacco and nicotine products and encourage quitting.

Prof Goma said the bill also seeks to domesticate the World Health Organisation framework convention on tobacco control and provide for matters incidental to and in connection with the foregoing.


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