Renevlyn Development Initiative

Web Discussion

Commemoration of World No Tobacco Day 2024 – Protecting Children from Tobacco Industry Interference

On 30 May 2024 the Renevlyn Development Initiative (RDI) in collaboration with Vital Voices for Africa (VVA), Togo and Kenya-based Being Africa organized a Web Discussion on Effective Reporting of Children and Tobacco Addiction.

The event, in commemoration of the 2024 World No Tobacco Day themed Protecting Children from Tobacco Industry Interference, brought together 57 journalists from 20 African countries including Nigeria, Kenya, Zambia, Ghana, Togo, and Cameroon.

Speakers included Executive Director of RDI, Philip Jakpor who delivered a presentation on Producing Captivating Reports on Youth Tobacco Smoking, Executive Director of VVA, Caleb Ayong who presented Youth Tobacco Use/Addiction as Obstacle to Attainment of SDG3 and Achieng Otieno of Being Africa who spoke on The Framework Convention on Tobacco Control and Children Rights.

Oluchi Joy Roberts

UK-based Nigeria tobacco control advocate Oluchi Joy Roberts delivered a presentation on The Tobacco Industry Addicts Children: Experiences from Nigeria, Communications specialist with the Centre for Primary Care Research (CPCR), Paxina Phiri delivered a presentation on The Tobacco Industry Addicts Children: Experiences from Zambia while Mohammed Maikudi, Nigeria Country Lead, Data on Youth and Tobacco Addiction (DaYTA) Programme of the Development Gateway spoke on The Dearth of Data on Children Smoking Rates and the DaYTA Initiative.

In his welcome words, RDI Executive Director, Philip Jakpor said that research shows that about one-third of youth experimentation with tobacco occurs as a result of tobacco industry marketing and tobacco advertising, promotion and sponsorship targeting them.

He said that worldwide, 78% of young people aged 13-15 years report regular exposure to some form of tobacco advertising, promotion and sponsorship, even as he added that recent researches show that children as young as 10 are also getting inducted into smoking due to their exposure to the internet and other factors.

In his intervention, Executive Director of VVA, Caleb Ayong pointed out that youths account for the largest chunk of the 8 million people who die every year from tobacco-related causes in low and middle income countries.

They pointed out the importance of capacitating the media to play their watchdog role and Warning about the dangers of tobacco, which represents the “W” in the EMPOWER initiative of the World Health Organisation (WHO).

Details of the training can be found in this link: https://tinyurl.com/2s3pua4e

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