2 Jun 2011

Fiji village becomes smoke-free

1:29 pm on 2 June 2011

A village in Fiji has become smokefree, along with a hospital and a community hall in Rotuma, to celebrate World No Tobacco Day, which was marked his week.

Last year, the regime imposed the Tobacco Control Decree, which places stricter controls and harsher penalties on the use and sale of tobacco.

The Ministry of Health's Peni Namotu says Fiji is the only developing country to have ratified the World Health Organisatiom's Framework Convention on Tobacco Control.

He says smoking is now prohibited in Nagumu village.

"With the introduction of these tobacco free initiatives, it assists the ministry in not only controlling the tobacco epidemic in Fiji, but also, it's a way of combatting non-communicable disease, such as cancer and cardiovascular disease."

Peni Namotu says a survey in 2002 showed that 36 percent of Fiji's population smokes.