This year’s World No Tobacco Day will be celebrated at Sibuoche market in Migori county on Wednesday 31, May at an event expected to be graced by senior national and county government officials.
According to Health experts, Cigarette smoking is among the leading causes of disabilities and death in Kenya and elsewhere.
“Smoking can cause many diseases, including cancer, heart disease, stroke, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) and other lung ailments, and diabetes,” said Dr. Dennis Obuon of Migori County referral hospital.
Dr. Obuon while speaking to KNA said quitting smoking can help one’s physical fitness goals, adding that it can also help you be ready and determined for “your family, friends, and country.”
World No Tobacco Day is aimed at highlighting all the dangers that smoking cigarettes or growing and handling green tobacco leaves portends to the health of human beings.
According to a Kenya News Agency report, Migori County is well known from the early 70s up to the late 90s, as the biggest tobacco producer in Kenya, accounting for more than 70 percent of the yields produced in the country.
The county is currently fighting the production of the crop led by the county government leadership which has introduced alternative crops like avocado, sugarcane, maize, and sunflower among others.
While some farmers – more than 10,000 tobacco growers in the region – have already switched to embracing alternative cash crops, a good number of hardcore tobacco farmers have vowed never to be pushed out of tobacco production.
World Health Organization created World No Tobacco Day in 1987 to draw global attention to the tobacco epidemic and the preventable death and disease it causes.
This year’s theme is “We need food, not tobacco”. The 2023 global campaign aims to raise awareness about alternative crop production and marketing opportunities for tobacco farmers and encourage them to grow sustainable, nutritious crops.
It will also aim to expose the tobacco industry’s efforts to interfere with attempts to substitute tobacco growing with sustainable crops, thereby contributing to the global food crisis.