The state House of Assembly in Oyo on Thursday passed a bill banning smoking in public places in the state.
The bill which was titled “Bill to Regulate Smoking in Public Places and for Connected Purposes’’ was sponsored by Segun Ajanaku and Mr Segun Olaleye, representing Ibadan South-West II and Ibadan North II constituencies, respectively, provides three to six months imprisonment or fine of between N15, 000 and N50, 000 for anyone found guilty of contravening the law.
According to the bill, public places where smoking has been banned includes shopping centers, restaurants, public toilets, cinemas, hospitals, creches, schools and public transportation vehicles within the state.
The bill stipulates a fine of N15, 000 or three month imprisonment or both for first time offenders while any person guilty of repeated act would be liable to a N50, 000 fine or six months imprisonment or both.
The bill also stipulates that any person found guilty of smoking in the presence of a child in a manner that exposes smoke to be injurious to the child, would be liable to a month imprisonment with an option of N15, 000 or both.
The bill states that any person who repeatedly violates the provision of not smoking in the presence of a child will be liable to one year imprisonment with an option of not less than N100, 000 or both. It makes it compulsory for any person involved with the management of a public place to put a ‘No-Smoking’ sign in conspicuous areas.
It states that refusal to place the sign or symbol by a corporate body, director, manager, company secretary or any person concerned in the management of the corporate body will be liable to N250, 000 fine upon conviction.
According to the provisions of the bill, any person found guilty of not putting up a ‘No-Smoking’ sign would be liable to six months imprisonment or N100,000 or other non-custodial punishment that the court may deem fit.