The Federal Ministry of Health is set to launch a six-month national tobacco control communications campaign in the country.
Mrs Boade Akinola, the Head of Media and Public Relations, Ministry of Health, in a statement on Wednesday said the campaign will be launched On the 15th of June in Abuja. This follows the announcement by the Minister of Health, Prof. Isaac Adewole, of nine provisions of the National Tobacco Control Act 2015 to be enforced by the federal government.
Akinola noted that the “Tobacco-Free Nigeria” campaign, aims to educate Nigerians on the NTC Act 2015 and raise awareness on the danger of tobacco smoking.
“The campaign will leverage on social media and offline interactions to reach young Nigerians, especially second-hand smokers who need to be aware of the ban of smoking in public places and protect themselves,” she said.
She also announced that the Ministry of Health has appointed Nigerian music superstars, Timi Dakolo and Oluwatosin Oluwole Ajibade, popularly known as Mr Eazi, as well as a young influential leader, Miss. Saadatu Hamilton Aliyu of the World Economic Forum’s Abuja Global Shapers Hub to leverage their influence with the young people of Nigeria.
Akinola reminded that the World Health Organisation (WHO) estimates that tobacco use is currently responsible for the death of about six million people annually across the world with eighty percent cent of those deaths occurring in low and middle-income countries like Nigeria. This, she said, includes about 600,000 people who are also estimated to die from the effects of second-hand smoke.
She noted that the campaign is supported by the Campaign for Tobacco Free Kids, Washington DC and Gatefield Impact.