Senator Olorunnimbe Mamora, sponsor of the National Tobacco Control Bill, has urged President Jonathan to sign the bill, saying that the country has a lot to benefit from the signing of the bill.
Explaining why he sponsored the bill, Mamora said he took up the challenge out of concern for the welfare of Nigerians in general and as a senator of the Federal Republic of Nigeria and a medical practitioner.
Listing what the bill is out to achieve, the Senator said: “It is essentially to control tobacco smoking and the use of tobacco, to regulate the sale, manufacturing, advertising and promotion of tobacco in the country. It was passed in May, this year by the Senate and was concurred by the House of Representatives. It is now before Mr President for his signature.”
“I am hopeful that Mr President will invariably sign the bill, thereby making it become an Act of the National Assembly. Signing the bill into law has a global dimension because it will put Nigeria on a high pedestal in terms of being a member of the international body of the nations that has taken interest in the health of its citizenry. The bill has socio-economic importance apart from health implications. The President should not only sign the bill but should also ensure that the provisions in the law are enforced.
The Environmental Rights Action/ Friends of the Earth Nigeria (ERA/FOEN) has also called on the President to work with the National Assembly to complete the process of signing the bill into law which was passed by the sixth National Assembly.
They called on all stakeholders in public health, the media and Nigerians in general to join them in asking for a tobacco-free Nigeria where every citizen shall have access to a clean and healthy environment.