The Ministry of Health’s tobacco control unit officers will vigilantly monitor non – smoking areas which have been declared Smoke Free Zones to ensure people respect the declaration.
These are the comments by the acting manager Tobacco Control Unit for the Ministry of Health, Afiz Ali.
“The Ministry remains committed towards ensuring that these places are protected and that people are aware of their responsibilities towards others,” Mr Ali said.
“Over the last five years, we have been able to book 1, 156 people and this year alone we have over 200 people that have been fined.”
Some of the non – smoking areas which includes the bus stations, markets, restaurants, sporting facilities, public service vehicles such as buses, taxis and entire streets of the city.
He said the Ministry would not be able to monitor these places on its own and has entered into partnerships to help curb this.
“We (Ministry) cannot do this on our own thus the reason for partnership with municipal councils.”
“We should get together to create more awareness about the dangers of smoking which would benefit non – smokers and others alike,” Mr Ali said.
Fiji currently has seven villages declared smoke free while another 42 villages have had their community halls declared tobacco free.