The Federal Competition and Consumers Protection Commission (FCCPC) has challenged cigarette dealers to indicate graphic health warning signs on every packet.
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This, the agency, said was in line with 2015, 2019 Nigerian Tobacco Act, warning that defaulters would soon be made to face the wrath of the law.
FCCPC, Head, Surveillance and Enforcement Operation, Mr. Kennis Camillus Anyanwu, made the disclosure in Lagos when its enforcement team stormed some supermarkets and shops in Lagos.
Addressing the press during the exercise, Anyanwu said the team embarked on the exercise to monitor compliance, stressing that the directive of the law must be adhered to given the health danger of cigarette smoking.
He said the commission was aware of its enormous obligation towards consumers and would do everything to ensure that their rights were protected.
His words: “We have passed the primary stage of just reporting that the federal ministry of health warns that smoking is dangerous. The new Act stipulates that graphic health warnings must be indicated on the packet and cigarette dealers are expected to comply or be made to face the music.
“Some claim that they do not know or are aware of the new cigarette law, so, we are at the same time creating awareness and after now, offenders will no longer be excused. Ignorance is not an excuse in law.”
Also speaking during the interaction, Project Officer, Nigerian Tobacco Control Alliance (NTCA), Chibuike Okorie, said the agency would no longer accept excuses, urging cigarette dealers, sellers, etc, to comply with the provision of the new tobacco act.
“We are driving down the gospel that tobacco smoking is dangerous and a killer. There must be compliance, obedience to the tobacco act and we can no longer compromise on this. We need serious collaboration of stakeholders to win this war,” Okorie noted.