Senate passes Tobacco Control Bill into law

The Senate yesterday passed into law the National Tobacco Control Bill, NTCB, after the document had spent several years on the shelf of the National Assembly.

But rather than impose an outright ban on the smoking of cigarette, Senate opted for controlled use of tobacco in the country.

The report on the Bill was presented by Senator Chris Ngige before the plenary on behalf of the Committee Chairman, Senator Ifeanyi Okowa, who is now the Governor-elect of Delta State.

Deputy Senate President, Ike Ekweremadu, who presided at the plenary, described the bills passage as a milestone and congratulated his colleagues on its passage.

According to him, The passage of the bill is a milestone for us as the Senate. The dangers associated with smoking cannot be over emphasised and the tragedy here is that those at risk are not just those who smoke, but also those around them, their loved ones, their families, neighbours and friends.

It is important that we regulate the smoking and other matters related with tobacco manufacturing and sales. This, we have done today in order to protect our people from the harmful effects of smoking. So, I believe that the society as well as those, whose businesses involve production and sale of tobacco, would understand our concern for the health of our people.

I believe that the law enforcement agencies will take appropriate actions to enforce this very important legislation, he said.

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