The Nigeria Tobacco Control Alliance (NTCA) has called for adequate funding of tobacco control in Nigeria to improve its standard,Dailytrust report.

NTCA chairman, Mr. Akinbode Oluwafemi made the call on Tuesday in Abuja at the first National tobacco control budget advocates meeting.

According to the World Health Organization (WHO), tobacco causes more than 8 million deaths annually across the world, with over 7 million of those deaths as a result of direct tobacco use and about 1.2m resulting from non-smokers being exposed to second-hand smoke.

Oluwafemi noted that if the nation’s health and well-being of citizens must be moved forward, the tobacco control system has to be prioritized in the country.

“Beyond the fact that the monies were not always released, I think that from the little information we have, the idea is that we will have a pool of CSOs that will specifically ask for increased budgetary allocation to tobacco control.

“On One side, they begin also to continue to look at how we are going to get more of that revenue. We got the information that the increase of taxes for this year on tobacco control has been suspended our control.

“So, the increase that we anticipated for the year is on hold. For me is that if we are not very careful, the taxes that we got my stand suspended and so we need as a group, monitor the budgetary allocation to this sector,” he said.

Speaking earlier, National Coordinator, Non-communicable Diseases division of the alliance, Dr. Bako Deborah, said it is important to state that funding is a major provision of the NTC Act.

Section 8 of the Act, provides for the Tobacco Control Fund, which shall be used to fund tobacco control activities programs, and projects.

Bako, represented by the head of the Tobacco Control Unit, Dr. Malau Toma, said that in effectively controlling tobacco and tobacco products in Nigeria, funding is a critical component.

She said, “The WHO FCTC recognizes this and stipulates in Article 26 that “Parties shall provide financial support in respect of its national activities intended to achieve the objective of the Convention, following its national plans, priorities, and programmes.”


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