15.3 C
Nairobi
December 13, 2019 - 03:28
Cyprian Is Nyakundi
Courts News

BAT Bites The Dust In Its Appeal To Revoke Tobacco Control Laws

Beverley Spencer-Obatoyinbo, Managing Director BAT Kenya

Amidst the BBI – Building Bridges Initiative report release, there was another thing that is very important that happened yesterday.

The British American Tobacco found itself in unfamiliar and great territory after it attempts to bribe Supreme Court judges and govt officials to defeat the Tobacco Control Act flopped.

The court document.

Here is the story

In March 2017, British American Tobacco Kenya Plc (“BAT Kenya” or “the Company”) filed an appeal to the Supreme Court of Kenya against the Court of Appeal’s judgment upholding the legality of the Tobacco Control Regulations 2014 (the “Regulations”).

Since 2007, when the Tobacco Control Act was enacted, every attempt by the
government to implement and enforce the law to protect the lives of Kenyans, has been opposed or blocked by the tobacco industry.

The Tobacco Control Regulations, 2014, which are expected to operationalize this Act, had also been blocked since 2015.

But yesterday, the BAT was defeated and Kenyans hope once and for all.

Because according to the Kenya Tobacco Control Alliance, Tobacco is responsible for 30,000 unnecessary deaths.

Tobacco use is currently among the top five leading behavioural causes of cancer, and is responsible for about a third of cancer deaths globally, according to WHO.

The chairman of the Kenya Tobacco Control Alliance, Mr. Joel Vitali, released a statement after the court ruling commeding the decision.

‘We congratulate the Supreme Court for upholding the regulations, confirming they conform to the Kenyan Constitution, whose main goal is also to protect health and lives of Kenyans’, Mr. Gitali said

BAT has been trying to arm twist the government into accepting its position by threatening to layoff Kenyan workers. But now their schemes have been defeated.

Below is the full statement from the Kenya Tobacco Control Alliance.

Mr. Joel Gitali, The Chairman, Kenya Tobacco Control Alliance Statement On The Ruling Of The Supreme Court On November 26th 2019, Nairobi

At least 30,000 of our family members, friends or other Kenyans who were alive on January 1st this year, will not see the end of the year. Reason? They will have been killed through exposure to tobacco.

Today, the Supreme Court has ruled to stop this senseless killing of defenseless Kenyans.
Since 2007, when the Tobacco Control Act was enacted, every attempt by the government to implement and enforce the law to protect the lives of Kenyans, has been opposed or blocked by the tobacco industry.

The Tobacco Control Regulations, 2014, which are expected to operationalize this act, had also been blocked since 2015.

Until now.

We congratulate the Supreme Court for upholding the regulations, confirming they conform to the Kenyan Constitution, whose main goal is also to protect health and lives of Kenyans.

By upholding the Tobacco Control Regulations, 2014, the Supreme Court has protected our school-going daughters or sons who were being preyed on by cigarette manufacturers.

It is now clear that cigarette manufacturers MUST now print clear graphical warnings on their products, admitting that the continued use of these products lead to disability, diseases and death.

The World Health Organisation has already demonstrated that tobacco kills up to half of its users’. This is more than 8 million victims each year globally. More than 7 million of those deaths are the result of direct tobacco use while around 1.2 million are the result of non-smokers being involuntarily exposed to second-hand smoke.

In Kenya, both the Tobacco Atlas (2018) and the Kenya STEPwise Survey for Non-Communicable Diseases Risk Factors (2015), show that exposure to causes severe health complications and eventual deaths of tobacco users.

Data from the Ministry of Health shows that Kenya has 2.5 million adults who are regular tobacco users.

Tobacco use is currently among the top five leading behavioural causes of cancer, and is responsible for about a third of cancer deaths globally, according to WHO.

Data from the Kenya National Bureau of Statistics shows that one in 11 deaths in Kenya was caused by cancer in 2017, making it the third deadliest disease after malaria and pneumonia.
Tobacco causes cancer of the mouth and throat, liver, pancreas, oesophagus, stomach, colon, rectum, larynx (voicebox), trachea, bronchus, urinary bladder, cervix, kidney and renal pelvis, as well as acute myeloid leukemia.

It is also responsible for a host of other non-communicable diseases in Kenya.

These regulations seek to stop these unnecessary deaths, and sicknesses. The Regulation Number 37 that requires manufacturers to pay the solatium compensatory contribution at 2% of the value of the tobacco manufactured or imported by the manufacturer or importer in that financial year, is especially welcome.

This fund can be ploughed into health programs to clear the mess created by tobacco use.

Now that it is clear that the Tobacco Control Regulations are constitutional and mean well for Kenyans, we urge the Ministry of Health and all other bodies involved in the implementation and enforcement of the regulations to act expeditiously in order to redeem the time lost unnecessarily in court. Indeed, with the national roll-out of the Universal Health Coverage expected beginning early next year, Kenya must join the rest of the world to protect the health and lives of people from disease, disability and death.

Together forever, the fight against tobacco MUST be won.

Defeated BAT Statement



Would you like to get published on this Popular Blog? You can now email Cyprian Nyakundi any breaking news, Exposes, story ideas, human interest articles or interesting videos on: hello@cnyakundi.com. Videos and pictures can be sent to +254 710 280 973 on WhatsApp, Signal and Telegram.


Related posts

Another FlySax Airline With Issues

Cyprian, Is Nyakundi

The Killing Of Nairobi NightLife

Cyprian, Is Nyakundi

Another Scandal In The Making? Kenyan Government Set To Launch A Mobile Loan App

Teddy Munene