Celebrating tobacco control Uganda champions, our heroes

Celebrating tobacco control Uganda champions, our heroes

This Friday, 7th of June, it was a joy to recognize and appreciate the heroes who have advocated against tobacco use in Uganda. Uganda National Health Consumer’s Organization (UNHCO) awarded Tobacco Control champions who have been instrumental in the milestones of protecting Uganda from the deadly tobacco. From the enactment of the Tobacco Control Act (TCA), through its enforcement and implementation, a lot of work has been done by different partners and advocates concerning tobacco control so as to protect the citizens (from the local citizens to the corporate community) The journey of Tobacco Control Advocacy in Uganda has been one of tides and turns, here is a sneak peak of the key events that have marked success in this journey.

  • 28th July 2015 Parliament of Uganda (PoU) enacted the TCA;
  • 19th of September 2015 presidential assent;
  • 18th November 2015 TCA published in Gazette;
  • 18th of May 2016 TCA entered into force;
  • 10th of December 2016 first shisha operation by Mukono Police;
  • 17th of May 2017 BAT injunction application dismissed with costs;
  • 11th of January 2019 11 shisha suspects convicted by magistrates’ court at Makindye;
  • 26th April 2019 National Tobacco Control Committee;
  • 28th May 2019 constitutional court dismissed BAT petition.

The awardees included (in no particular order);

• Hon. Dr. Ruth Aceng • Hon. Sarah Opendi • Hon. Chris Baryomunsi • Hon. David Bahati • Muhumuza Nicholas (Journalist from Dream TV) and • Kamugo Bashir, a youth representative from Makerere University

“Let us continue to be committed on this journey to fight as responsible citizens to protect our fellow citizens”, Dr. Ruth Aceng emphasized.

To all those online and offline advocates who have been a part of this journey of Tobacco control in Uganda, thank you.

Conclusion

The fight has just begun, and this is a call to all advocates to stay strong as we continue to adopt the Tobacco Control regulation BUT most importantly popularize them so that every Ugandan is informed.

Photo courtesy: Ministry of Health

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