The General Secretary of the Media Alliance in Tobacco Control (MATCO), Emmanuel Tsedey has expressed disappointment at the delay by the Attorney General and Minister for Justice in sending the draft Legislative Instrument on Tobacco Control to Parliament for adoption.

The LI which is supposed to direct how the law on Tobacco under the Public Health Act 851 should be implemented is reportedly gathering dust at the Attorney General?s Office.

Speaking in an interview with Radio Ghana, Mr Tsedey said the longer the country delays the implementation of the law the higher the risk of people dying of tobacco related illnesses particularly second hand smokers and teenagers.

He said society must not sit by and watch children who are the future leaders of the country die of tobacco when steps can be taken now to prevent that from happening.

The General Secretary of the Media Alliance in Tobacco Control therefore calls on the Attorney General to as a matter of urgency present the LI to Parliament for rectification.

The law when implemented will ban smoking in public places as well as the sale of cigarette to minors. It will also ban all tobacco companies from sponsoring any public event in any form.

Mr Tsedey appealed to health professionals to support the campaign against all substance abuse since they affect the respiratory system and undermine the proper functioning of organs in the body.

He revealed that the use of tobacco, especially among girls, is on the increase, adding that ?Tobacco use kills nearly six million people each year globally, and of the figure more than 600 thousand are second-hand smokers.

President John Dramani Mahama appended his signature to the Public Health Act; Act 851 in 2012 after it was passed by Parliament.

The required instrument to regulate the implementation of the Act is yet to be brought before the House hence the call on the Attorney General and Minister for Justice to expedite action on the laying of the LI in Parliament.

Source: GBC


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