Uganda: New tobacco control law adopted

On 28 July 2015, the Parliament of Uganda passed its new Tobacco Control Law after long negotiations and engagements with relevant stakeholders. The law requires 100% smoke-free public places, including a ban of smoking within a distance of 50 meters of any public place. The ban covers shisha, electronic cigarettes and chewing tobacco.

In addition, no sales of tobacco products are permitted within 50 meters of educational and health institutions, cinemas, police stations, prisons or other places where children are cared for.

The law also introduces a comprehensive ban on tobacco advertising, promotion and sponsorship and requires that cigarette packs “shall not prominently display” at point of sale.

Further, it calls for pictorial health warnings covering 65 percent of all display areas. Tobacco products are not to be sold to any person under the age of 21 and duty free tobacco products will no longer be available for sale.

The law prescribes imprisonment to the government officials who are involved in the formulation of public health policies for tobacco control if they interact with the tobacco industry contrary to Article 5.3 of the WHO FCTC and the related implementation guidelines.

More information is available from: Dr. Sheila Ndyanabangi, Tobacco Control Focal Point, Ministry of Health, Uganda (