If smoking is considered harmful to health, it is not the only activity that worries health authorities. Indeed, shisha and e-cigarettes have also been singled out, especially in Ghana. Like many other African nations, the country is planning to ban both alternatives to cigarettes.
These measures, based on a study conducted by the Ghana Health Service, should take effect in June 2018. Particularly popular amongst African youth, the health effects of shisha is the main focus of the study.
Doctor Divine Darlington Logoh, the study’s primary researcher, suggests that shisha is even more harmful than traditional cigarettes. If both contain tobacco, one puff of shisha is equivalent to “smoking an entire cigarette.” This would amount to inhaling 100 to 200 times the amount of smoke emitted by a cigarette. Indeed, for shisha smokers, the danger is real.
Ghana, far from being convinced of the benefits of vaping
According to Doctor Nino Ramanandraibe of the WHO Africa office, African leaders are too lax about smoking. While tobacco use is on the rise in Africa, Ghana is keen to make a difference. The country is following in the footsteps of Tanzania, Kenya, and Rwanda, which have all already banned the use of shisha. Ghana, however, is also adding a vaping ban.
Used in Europe as the primary alternative to tobacco, vaping does not appear to be as attractive to Ghanaian authorities. Furthermore, scientific studies demonstrating the benefits of vaping have not been sufficiently convincing, who consider vaping as a gateway to smoking. Both will now be banned in the African state.
To facilitate the application of the new law, authorities are planning to control the borders. Importing shisha or e-cigarettes into Ghana will thus be considered illegal by mid June 2018.