Tobacco is a killer and single most preventable cause of death in the world. Currently, about 8million people die annually from tobacco use, and if nothing is done to reverse or halt the epidemic, tobacco-related deaths could rise to 10million annually by 2030, according to Executive Director Corporate Accountability and Public Participation Africa, (CAPPA), Mr. Akinbode Oluwafemi.
He said of the 8million deaths, 1.3million are non-smokers exposed to secondhand smoke adding that exposure to smoking on screen has great influence on kids taking up the smoking habit.
Oluwafemi who spoke at the stakeholders’ summit on Smoking In Movies organised by Corporate Accountability and Public Participation Africa at Ikeja, Lagos on Thursday stated that with tobacco advertising ban in place in almost every country, the tobacco industry is embracing covert below the line platforms to keep their products in the hearts and minds of potential customers.
“We strongly think that going beyond enforcing the law, as stakeholders, it is now time for us to start the discourse on some basic Code of Conduct for the industry as it relates to smoking in movies. There are areas we want stakeholders here present to consider.
“They include adult rating for films with smoking scenes, strong anti-smoking adverts, anti-smoking health warnings, certify pay offs, stopping identification of tobacco brands, total ban on tobacco products placement and stop glamorization of smoking,” he said.The task before the participants at the summit was how to understand the provisions of the law, how practitioners who are concerned about public health, economic and other costs of tobacco consumption will be active in the smoke free Nollywood initiative.
The summit attracted participants from the Federal Ministry of Health, Nigeria Tobacco Control Alliance, Tobacco Free Kids, Nigeria Police Force, Nigerian Security and Civil Defence Corps, Broadcasting Organisation of Nigeria, Nigerian Films and Video Censors Board, Federal Competition and Consumer Protection Commission and Nollywood actors and actresses.