Children in Nairobi are being exposed to smoking at an early age — and retailers are to blame
Retailers have been accused of exposing children to tobacco by unlawfully selling single sticks of cigarettes
This is according to a study by International Institute for Legislative Affairs (IILA) which revealed that over 64 per cent of cigarettes sold in the city are single sticks and are mainly bought by low-income earners, adolescents and children.
Ms Emma Wanyonyi, the ILLA chief executive officer accused retailers of being ignorant of the law saying they expose children to smoking at an early age.
"When you give a child Sh10 for their break in school, it is enough for them to buy at least two single sticks. After a while, they get hooked which leads to addiction even before adulthood," Ms Wanyonyi said.
She called on the government to strengthen the enforcement of the law so as to make the cigarettes inaccessible to children.
The study was conducted in the designated smoking zones in the city centre, Kibra, Mathare, Kawangware, Buruburu, Kileleshwa and Karen.
Section 18 of the Tobacco Control Act of 2007 states that the sale of cigarettes will only be done as a pack of not less than 10 pieces.
Research conducted by the Centre for Tobacco Control in Africa has revealed that almost 10 per cent of Kenyan youth aged between 13 and 15 are already using tobacco.
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