Bill in Parliament to increase legal smoking age to 21 years
Persons aged below 21 years may soon be banned from smoking or accessing tobacco products if a Bill introduced in parliament is given a nod by legislators.
African Centre for Corrective and Preventive Action (ACCPA), a Kenyan-based NGO wants the age limit of smokers changed from the current 18 years pegged on the Tobacco Act of 2007 to 21 years for both health and behavioral reasons.
ACCPA executive chairman Mwangi Macharia says the proposed law hopes to protect the health of Kenyans below 21 years in light of conclusive scientific evidence implicating tobacco production, use and exposure to incidences of debilitating illness, disease, disability and death.
“Tobacco control is the single most preventable cause of death in the world today, and is estimated to kill more than five million people every year, more than tuberculosis, HIV/Aids and malaria combined. By 2030, the death toll will exceed eight million a year, unless urgent action is taken,” Macharia says in his memorandum to the National Assembly.
It follows revelations that tobacco use is the single most preventable cause of death in the world today, with reports indicating that the latter kill more than five million people every year – more than tuberculosis, HIV/AIDS and malaria combined, a number that the NGO estimates could exceed eight million a year unless urgent action is taken.
While individuals aged 18 years and above are perceived to possess the necessary intellectual skills.