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Wednesday, May 16, 2012

Tobacco bill: ERA/FoEN demands presidential assent

As governments and public health advocates plan towards this year’s World No Tobacco Day (May 31) the Environmental Rights Action/Friends of the Earth Nigeria has sent a strong appeal to President Goodluck Jonathan to use this year’s commemoration to sign the across the globe Environmental Rights Action/Friends of the Earth Nigeria (ERA/FoEN) to assent to the recently passed National Tobacco Control Bill.

In a press release issued in Lagos and signed by ERA/FoEN Director, Corporate Accountability & Administration, Akinbode Oluwafemi, the organisation urged President Jonathan to sign the National Tobacco Bill (NTCB) to celebrate the global event.
ERA/FoEN also asked the Health Minister, Onyebuchi Chukwu to take the lead in the processes that will lead to the signing of the bill ahead of the World No Tobacco Day.
The2012 WNTD has as theme: Industry Interference, and urges government to protect their public health policies from vested and other tobacco industry interests.
Akinbode Oluwafemi said: “Nigeria has made giant strides in fulfilling our international obligations by attempting to domesticate the FCTC through the National Tobacco Control Bill, but we are afraid these gains that we have worked for as civil society organizations, legislators and the Ministry of Health will be reversed if the President does not sign this bill to commemorate this year’s WNTD.”