The Protecting and Activating Communities Against Tobacco (PACT) has called for smoke-free spaces in the FCT as part of measures to tackle tobacco related ailments and environmental pollution.
This is as more than 400 Nigerians; mostly youths, have signed a petition urging the Federal Government and public institutions to establish smoke-free spaces in FCT.
The PACT Hub Leader, Abuja, Ms Florence Ameh, speaking at an awareness rally yesterday in Abuja, said that every year, eight million people worldwide die from tobacco use and that five million Nigerians consume over 20 million sticks of cigarettes annually.
“We are calling on the FCT Minister and Ministry of Health to prioritise and introduce smoke-free policies to protect the lives of Abuja residents.
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“Smoke-free policies and spaces can protect everybody from the harmful effects of second-hand smoke. The government can enact different policies to minimise second-hand smoke,” she said.
Ameh said that across Africa, over 75 million people use some form of tobacco, thus the need to create awareness on the harmful effects of tobacco products, especially among young people who believe smoking in all forms is trendy.