According to Dr. Armando Peruga, who previously coordinated the WHO Tobacco Free Initiative and now works as a consultant, tobacco does not only cause cancer to the body alone but to the earth.
"...takes away a lot of nutrients from the soil and requires massive amounts of fertilizer, a process that leads to degradation of the land and desertification, with negative consequences for biodiversity and wildlife," - Peruga."
The announcement was made through the Nigerian minister for health, Isaac Adewale, under the Nigeria Tobacco Control Act.
The Act which was signed earlier into law in 2015 by former President, Goodluck Jonathan aims at reducing Tobacco use in the country.
Below are the regulations listed by the minister to be implemented:
RULES OF TOBACCO SALES AND DISTRIBUTION IN NIGERIA 2017
1. Prohibition of the sale of tobacco products to and by anyone below age 18.
2. Ban of sale of cigarettes in single sticks; cigarettes must be sold in packs of 20 sticks only.
3. Smokeless tobacco shall be sold in a minimum of a pack of 30 grammes.
4. Ban of sale or offer for sale or distribution of tobacco or tobacco products through mail, internet, or other online devices.
5. Prohibition of interference of tobacco industry in public health and related issues.
6. Prohibition of smoking in anywhere on the premises of a child care facility, educational facility, and healthcare facility.
Other places where smoking is prohibited include: playgrounds, amusement parks, plazas, public parks, stadia, public transport, restaurants’ bar, and other public gathering spaces.
7. Prosecution of owner or manager of any of the places listed above who permits, encourages or fails to stop smoking in the above listed places.
8. Prohibition of tobacco advertising, promotion and sponsorship of any kind.
9. Compliance with specified standards for content.
These laws will ultimately facilitate access to more affordable credit for Nigerians. The bills which have now become ‘Acts’ are the Secured Transactions in Movable Assets Act, 2017 (otherwise known as Collateral Registry Act) and the Credit Reporting Act, 2017.