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Outrage as Tobacco Control Bill Public Hearings Not Concluded as National Elections Draw Closer.

The National Council Against Smoking joined the South African Tobacco Free Youth Forum (SATFYF) and other Protect Our Next partners for a peaceful public demonstration outside the South African Parliament, calling on the portfolio on health committee to conclude public consultation hearings in Kwa-Zulu Natal (KZN) and Northern Cape.

Hearings for the Tobacco Products and Electronic Delivery System Control Bill took place in seven of the nine provinces from September 2023. However, provinces like KZN were continuously postponed and cancelled. Initially, hearings in KZN were scheduled for December 2023 but got postponed and later cancelled with no adequate justification.  Cancellations of hearings has resulted in further delays in the legislative process for the tobacco control bill, especially with national elections drawing closer.

It is evident that the tobacco industry is well-versed on levers to delay the Bill, and hope it is not being allowed to interfere with this process and influence the pace of public health progress. Though tobacco control youth advocates were ready to handover its memorandum to the Chairperson of the portfolio on health committee, Dr Kenneth Jacobs, he and other members of the committee were unavailable to receive the memorandum.

An official in the office of the Speaker in the National Assembly, received the memorandum on behalf of the committee.

Professor Lekan Ayo-Yusuf Receives the 2024 Mira Aghi Award by the Society for Research on Nicotine and Tobacco.

The Executive Director of the National Council Against Smoking, Professor Lekan Ayo-Yusuf, received the SRNT award named after LMIC research and dedicated SRNT member, Mira Aghi. The award recognises outstanding LMIC researchers and Professor Ayo-Yusuf is the first recipient of this prestigious award.

As the inaugural recipient of this distinguished accolade, Prof. Ayo-Yusuf's work exemplifies excellence in public health and serves as a beacon of inspiration for researchers globally. His dedication to tackling critical issues in tobacco control underscores his commitment to improving global health outcomes.

We congratulate him for this well deserved and esteemed accolade.

NCAS proudly joined civil society delegations at the Tenth Conference of the Parties (COP10) for the WHO's Framework Convention on Tobacco Control (FCTC) in Panama City from February 5 to 12, 2024. Under the theme "United for Healthy Lives," COP10 witnessed the adoption of numerous decisions pivotal for tobacco control, with far-reaching positive impacts on health, the environment, human rights, and the economy.

Tobacco Control News

The research study reviews literature on tobacco use and behavior among adolescents and young adults aged 12-24 years in South Africa to estimate the prevalence of tobacco use within this demographic.

Studies shows the prevalence of current tobacco use among adolescents and young adults which was estimated to be 22%. The prevalence of tobacco use among school dropouts, university students and secondary school learners reported 51%, 20% and 16%, respectively. The study also showed that boys were two times more likely to use tobacco than girls.

The study concludes that the elevated occurrence of tobacco usage among South African youth adults is a public health concern. It indicated a need for more population-based prevalence studies at a national level to estimate the burden of tobacco use in South Africa. Insights of the full study has been published.

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