Activists call on govt to educate tobacco growers

Tuesday December 12 2017


By Syriacus Buguzi

Dar es Salaam. Anti-tobacco activists have asked the government to invest more in educating tobacco farmers on the hazards associated with the crop instead of encouraging them to make money out of it. The Executive Director of Tanzania Tobacco Control Forum (TTCF), Ms Lutgard Kagaruki said yesterday that the government stands to lose more financial resources on treating people harmed by tobacco compared to the income generated from the business. The TTCF’s remarks come after a recent statement by minister for Agriculture Dr Charles Tizeba in Tabora where he encouraged tobacco production.

e TTCF claims in a statement that during an event to inaugurate the board, Dr Tizeba issued remarks that were contradicting and belittling the World Health Organisation’s Framework Convention on Tobacco Control (WHO-FCTC).

According to the TTCF, Dr Tizeba’s statement indicated that the WHO-FCTC) prevented farmers from engaging in tobacco farming due to hazards claimed to be associated with the crop while there are other harmful hazards found in drinks such as soda and nobody talks about them.

While inaugurating the TTB in Tabora on December 3, Dr Tizeba asked tobacco growers to continue investing in the crop. He said tobacco contributes greatly to the country’s Gross Domestic Product (GDP). (By Syriacus Buguzi)