Mp’s on Tuesday passed the tobacco control bill, 2014, into law with various changes bringing an end to the debate of anti-tobacco rules.
According to Daily Monitor, a news paper, it says that the parliamentary committee on health regrouped last week to coordinate the supreme positions before forcing it’s way into the order paper (parliament business schedule) on Tuesday.
And that the law has observed enraged swaying by both health activists, pushing for stricter controls, and tobacco industry special interests who have often soared the issue of billion of shillings that tobacco have contributed to the annual tax revenue.
The passing of the bill into the law meant that there is no more buying of one stick but instead a pack of cigarettes, this is aimed to limit young people to consume them and to consume a packet of cigarettes you must be above 21 years even though according to the constitution, you are recognized as an adult at 18 years.
One smoking cigarettes should be 50 meters away from the public venue. Shisha is banned totally, it shouldn’t be imported, smoked and sold because its illegal now to do the above and so applies to Kuber.
According the state minister for health, Dr Chris Baryomunsi, who sponsored the new legislation, the whole aim was to heavily control the manufacture, sale and use of tobacco products, something he said has been largely achieved.
Even if the President signs it into a law, the new Act will take effect after 12 months. Among the demands that the tobacco companies will have to adjust to include labeling a cigarette pack with a health warning sign which must take 65 per cent of the entire available space. The companies will also have to ensure that their dealings are 50 meters away from a public places and that those who smoke must do so in a smoking zones.
Failure to comply with the new provisions could lead to imprisonment exceeding not more than seven years or a fine not less than Shs4.5m or even both.
If the President signs it into law within 30 days as mandated, then it will eventually regulate labeling, advertising and promotion, distribution and use of tobacco products.
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