Promoting effective tobacco control through advancement of public health systems in Nigeria
Okeke Anya 1  
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Civil Society Legislative Advocacy Centre (CISLAC), Programs, Nigeria
East Tennessee State University, Health Services, Management and Policy, United States of America
Publication date: 2018-03-01
Tob. Induc. Dis. 2018;16(Suppl 1):A438
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Background and challenges to implementation:
Nigeria's estimated population of 170 million with a large youth segment provides a veritable market for the Tobacco Industry.
Nigeria ratified the WHO Framework Convention on Tobacco Control (WHO) in 2005, and subsequently enacted the National Tobacco Control Act (NTCA) in 2015, with the Federal Ministry of Health (FMoH) as the focal coordinating agency. Nigeria made attempts towards domesticating the convention through a national law in 2011 which failed but this was fortunately passed into a National Tobacco Control Act in 2015.
However, the law is yet to take traction amongst a wide range of Public Health Institutions (PHIs). This project aims at understanding the innate challenges in selected PHIs towards bridging the much required capacity gaps and to improve understanding and advocacy for mainstreaming Tobacco Control (TC) into a broad TC agenda in Nigeria.

Intervention or response:
Since the enactment of the NTCA, advances in implementation and other broad TC initiatives in Nigeria can largely be attributable to activities of Non-State Actors (NSAs). Government's financial support to tobacco control has been very weak.

Results and lessons learnt:
Notwithstanding the poor financial support to TC concerns, CSOs' interventions such as advocacy, media outreaches and general awareness for the populace have continued to give strength to tackling the Tobacco Industry tactics. Furthermore, the gaps witnessed underscore the need for enhanced coordination by the relevant government agencies which has the official and political mandate to deal with TC issues.

Conclusions and key recommendations:
The implementation of the NTCA in Nigeria has stalled because the law has not gained traction within PHIs. This suggests that enactment of NTCA does not necessarily translate into actionable policies and programs without the buy-in of key PHIs. Hence, implementing NTC policies that are consistent with the WHO FCTC requires the engagement of PHIs in the entire policy process.