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CAP wants MoH to protect public health, community well-being

Publish date: Wed, 29 Nov 2023, 07:34 PM

KUALA LUMPUR: The Health Ministry has been called to do the right thing and ban e-cigarette products and table the Generational Endgame Bill (GEG).

Consumers' Association of Penang (CAP) senior education officer N.V. Subbarow said that the ministry should take up the trust given by the public, who want aspects of public health to be protected and to maintain the health of the community.

"They are not acting on solid evidence to support banning vaping products.

"Worse, they have acted in the public's interest by eliminating nicotine, poisons, and highly addictive chemicals from the list of poisons.

"The Health Ministry's action has failed its role to protect the public, especially children, by handing over its responsibility regarding the vaping issue to parents."

It was earlier reported that the provisions prohibiting the sale of tobacco products and cigarettes as well as the smoking ban were dropped from the GEG bill which was presented again for the first reading in the Dewan Rakyat today.

Based on the previous GEG bill which was presented for the first reading on June 12, there were four provisions related to prohibitions imposed on individuals born on Jan 1, 2007 onwards.

It includes Articles 13, 14, 18 and 19, which are the ban on the sale of tobacco products, smoking materials, smoking tobacco products and smoking tobacco substitute products for people born on Jan 1, 2007 onwards.

The new bill which was presented by the Health Minister, Dr Zaliha Mustafa yesterday, stipulated that under Article 17 (1) the ban on smoking and using tobacco products is imposed on minors who are under the age of 18.

By dropping the four provisions, CAP did not downplay the challenging task of parents as they have to become "vape experts" and "poison experts", to educate their children about the dangers of the product.

Subbarow also said that parents from now on would have to play a role in ensuring their children's health was guaranteed should they be exposed to the widespread sale of vaping products.

"Parents also need to become enforcement officers after this, so that they can make sure that shops near schools do not sell vape to their children.

"Parents will have to act as discipline teachers to ensure that their children do not bring vapes in their school bags and do not visit premises that sell vapes.

"They also have to make sure the status of the vape their child uses is in accordance with the regulations set by the Customs Department and also be responsible if their child is addicted or suffers poisoning because the GEG bill is suddenly unconstitutional," he said.

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