Botswana Ministry of Health hosts No Tobacco Day in Jwaneng

Botswana: Ministry of Health Botswana commemorated World No Tobacco Day on Friday, in Jwaneng. The event is hosted in several parts of the world, to spread awareness regarding the use of Tobacco Products.

As a part of the commemoration, the people who consume tobacco products are urged to abstain from the practice for at least 24 hours. The Ministry of Health in Botswana hosted the event under the theme: Protecting children from tobacco industry interference.

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The Ministry of Health shared that the theme is focussed on advocating for an end to the targeting of youth with harmful tobacco products.  The event to commemorate the World Tobacco Day was hosted in Jwaneng with several youngsters in attendance.

The Ministry of Health shared some glimpses from the event on their social media account. During the evet, Acting Minister of Health Sethomo Lelatisitswe delivered a brief address.

He spoke about the various ways in which the administration is working to curb the consumption of Tobacco. The administration has thought of the Tobacco Control Act of 2021 in this regard to decrease Tobacco use by youngsters.

Under this legislation, the government prohibits sale of tobacco products to and by persons under the age of 21. He also clarified that the implementation of this act is yet to start.Further, Minister Lelatisitswe said this was a deliberate stance by government.

The aim of the initiative is to delay the age at which a person may interact with tobacco products. He highlighted that the Ministry of Health has funded Non-Governmental Organisations to run awareness campaigns in Botswana.

The funds for these initiatives come from through the Tobacco Levy and run across the country. The aim of the project is to provide rehabilitation to users of tobacco products.

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Lelatisitswe also mentioned that Ministry of Health is currently undertaking the STEPS Survey to combat the issue of Tobacco abuse. The results from the survey will be used to further inform policy and improve programming for Tobacco Control issues.

Prior to the hosting of the day, the Jwaneng Town Council in collaboration with Ministry of Health staged build-up activities which include a soccer tournament, school essay competitions, drama competitions, panel discussion with the aim of stimulating conversation on tobacco control among the Jwaneng community.