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Charges on smoking at public places decline in 2019

Radio & TV Tonga, Nuku’alofa, 07/01/2020

The Tobacco Unit of the Ministry of Health has recorded a decline in the number of charges made due to smoking at public places last year compared to the record of 2016-2018.

The Tobacco officer from the Ministry of Health Le’omolotu Havea says since they started their operation in 2016, more than 2hundred people were fined annually for smoking at public areas.

The same amount was recorded in 2017 and 2018.

However last year, 2019 only more than 60 people were fined for smoking at public places.

Le’omolotu says most of the people were fined are women in the Nuku’alofa area.

He believes the duties on tobacco have impacted the number of smokers, with many giving up smoking as they could no longer afford it.

Le’omolotu adds they continue to work hand in hand with the related stakeholders to reduce tobacco consumption in Tonga.

© Radio and Television Tonga News