The Western Regional Directorate of the Food and Drugs Authority (FDA) has conducted an educational session for 10 stakeholders on protocols aimed at eliminating illicit trade in tobacco products within the country.
Representatives were drawn from the Sekondi-Takoradi Metropolitan Assembly (STMA), Effia-Kwesimintsim Municipal Assembly (EKMA), Environmental offices, Community Development, the Ghana Standards Authority, and the Ghana Health Service.
Dr. Martin Kusi, the Western Regional FDA Director, presented the Articles of the Protocol, offering a regional perspective on illicit tobacco trade and regulations governing tobacco products in the country.
The primary goals of the training included enhancing coordination mechanisms for tobacco control, identifying stakeholder roles in protocol implementation, building law enforcement capacity, and creating awareness about eliminating illicit tobacco trade.
Highlighting the significant health threat posed by tobacco, especially to the youth, Dr. Kusi emphasized the potential hindrance to sustainable development.
Illicit tobacco trade not only compounds public health risks but also deprives the government of essential revenues for public services.
Mr. Solomon Boni, the Regional Public Relations Officer of the FDA, outlined key measures to prevent illicit trade in the region, including post-market surveillance and school and community education.
Stakeholders participating in the training collectively called on the government to consider an outright ban of tobacco from the Ghanaian market.