Uganda became a part of the World Health Organization (WHO) Frame Convention on Tobacco Control (FCTC) in June 2007 signed a treaty that makes the country legally obligated to implement the treaty in good faith.

This treaty motivated the drafting of the Tobacco control bill 2014 that aims to protect Ugandans’ health from tobacco caused problems and diseases. The bill which has struck in the parliamentary health committee for now a year (reason that was given recently was because the health committee lawyer was sick) has faced many Tobacco industry (TI) interference and this is not acceptable.

According to the preamble of the FCTC, it instructs parties to be “alert to any efforts by the tobacco industry to undermine or subvert tobacco control efforts”. It also asks to protect the Tobacco Control policy from “commercial and other vested interests of the TI”.

To meet these obligations the convention parties are obligated to implement policies that increase accountability and transparency. Like when interacting with the TI there should be transparency, rejecting any TI assistance towards any tobacco control legislation or policy drafted, and prohibiting CSR activities by the TI.

It should be known that Tobacco companies are unlike others because;

– They have irreconcilable conflicts with health,

– They are the only industry that sells a highly addictive product that causes disease, disability and death, (the 3Ds of tobacco use)

– Their products are the only legal consumer products that kill people when used as intended by the manufacturer. They don’t just kill the user but even they neighbor.

– It’s the only product that has an international treaty explicitly created to reduce its use.

– Also that decade of evidence show that tobacco companies and their allies have sought to meet with government decision makers to dilute, delay and defeat tobacco control legislation.

So what are these strategies that the TI is using to interfere with the legislation?

The TI uses very similar tactics as seen around the world to cause control among the legislator and the people of the country by threatening farmers with pulling out from doing business with them yet they enslave them to their crop; and pulling out of the country’s economies because they tend to pay high taxes though it has been known that they taxes are not worthy the health burden their product brings to the country.

They also tend to submit misleading public and private comments in media related and redefining the Tobacco control bill content like;

  1. 7th Aug 2012 through PSFU
  2. Complaint letters to MoFPED, clerk
  3. Lobbying secretly with MPs and government officials ie in Sheraton hotel, Kolping hotel and flew MPs to West Nile.
  4. Creating influence and mobilization seemingly independent allies – PSFU, ITGA, UTGA, KACITA, ULS, MoTIC, MoAAIF
  5. Media manipulation through conducting workshops and talk shows
  6. They have been inter-mediating MPs like Hon Chris the sponsor of the Tobacco control bill
  7. Threats have been thrown left, right and center like taking their business away from Uganda
  8. Claiming support for the reasonable regulation; as if the one available is not reasonable enough in regard to health issues.
  9. Claiming a seat at TC legislation; this will be a win for them but no! Health first you can’t negotiate with health killers
  10. Fund and disseminate research to support their positions.

These guys have a lot of tactics to make sure they kill making money off the health of others.

Please share this with your people so that they know….

This blog post has been posted on Truth Uganda blog too.

Please share this with your people so that they know….

Patricia Kahill

Patricia Kahill is a multipotentialite Christian entrepreneur, Content Marketing Coach and founder of the Content Marketing agency, Kahill Insights that helps business owners create engaging and interactive content items for digital platforms with a focus on returning a desired outcome. Patricia was the producer of SlamDunk Basketball Talk a show on House of Talent online TV, a former fellow at Harvest Institute for leadership and now an assessor there, and an alumnus of the YELP class of 2017. A member of the BNI Integrity chapter and African Women Entrepreneur Cooperative. She is driven by passion and curiosity, been taking every opportunity that has been given to her with an ambition of stamping her footprint on the world.

2 thoughts on “Why the Uganda Tobacco Control Bill Needs Protection from the Tobacco Industry”

  1. I think people who are posting this are mislead and are in one way or another trying to account for the huge money they have got from anti .TI group.We know the group and source of funding. their noise like CHRIS is not justfiable , its all about cash.Critically analyse the health sector, infant motarlity rate, etc and come on and start raising the noise about tobacco industry.

    1. So if you know them, how is their know about health any different form what you are saying?
      How are their mislead and by who? How is it about cash?
      Have you been to the cancer institute?
      Do you know how many people die of tobacco related cancer in this country?

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *