ANTI-SMOKING advocates on Thursday urged President Rodrigo Duterte to sign the executive order (EO) implementing a national smoking ban.
In a news conference in Quezon City, New Vois Association of the Philippines (NVAP) president Emer Rojas said the longer that the smoking ban EO is not signed, the higher the risk that debilitating diseases will affect smokers and non-smokers alike.
“The clock is ticking and we cannot afford to sit back and wait as an estimated 82,468 new cancer cases are expected to occur in the Philippines if we don’t act now,” Rojas said.
Health Justice Legal Consultant Jim Asturias said that the EO will protect children in schools from second-hand smoke.
“While it is prohibited to smoke inside school facilities, many children are exposed to secondhand smoke outside campuses and in many locations considered as public areas,” Asturias said.
“With the EO, children are offered a better chance to protect themselves from the harmful effects of inhaling cigarette smoke,” he added. DEMPSEY REYES