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Health service wants to ban shisha, e-cigs

13 Mar 2018. The Ghana Health Service (GHS) wants to ban the smoking of shisha and the use of electronic cigarettes this year, according to comments made by a GHS official, Business Ghana reported.

In comments made on the sidelines of the 17th World Conference on Tobacco or Health in Cape Town, Principal Research Officer at GHS, Divine Darlington Logo, said research conducted by the GHS showed the use of shisha and electronic cigarettes has overtaken cigarette use among youth in the country. 5.3 per cent of youth are now using waterpipe tobacco and vapour devices compared to 2.8 per cent using tobacco cigarettes, Business Ghana reported.

Logo said shisha is more harmful than cigarettes and that GHS is looking to secure a ban on waterpipe tobacco and electronic cigarettes in the country by the middle of this year.

[We are] working with the Ministry of Health now to ban shisha and electronic cigarettes now in Ghana. Shisha use is more harmful than cigarettes, one puff from that tube is equal to one full cigarette that you smoke, he said.

"So it is more dangerous than [a] cigarette. So with that alone, as far as public health is concerned, we [are] using that alone to ban it from Ghana, I can assure you by the middle of this year surely that has to be done," Logo was quoted as saying.

If Ghana bans the use of shisha it will become the third country in Africa to outlaw waterpipe tobacco, with similar bans in Tanzania and Rwanda already in effect.