Omotola Jalade-Ekeinde and Dakore Egbuson-Akande have teamed up with other Nollywood heavyweights for the campaign against the promotion of tobacco products in Nigerian films.

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Esther Aghotor, creative director of #SmokeFreeNollywood, a non-governmental organisation, said the move became imperative considering the negative impact on children.

The initiative, backed by the Washington-based Campaign for Tobacco-Free Kids in collaboration with Gatefield, a public strategy firm, is to commemorate the 2021 edition of World No Tobacco Day.

Quoting statistics by the World Health Organisation (WHO), the statement said 370,000 children in Nigeria smoke daily.

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It noted that research showed that a significant percentage of current adult smokers were influenced by movies.

“370,000 children in Nigeria smoke cigarettes and use tobacco products daily. 17,500 Nigerians die from tobacco use yearly. 37 percent of these smokers started smoking as children due to the influence of movies that are created,” the statement read.

Other celebrities involved in the campaign are Osas Ighodaro, Anto Lecky, Meg Otanwa, Michelle Dede, Kayode Kasum, Daniel Effiong, Linda Ejiofor, Kiki Omeili, and Imoh Emmanuel Chimezie.

The World No Tobacco Day, marked on May 31 every year, was introduced by WHO to spread awareness of the dangers related to using tobacco.

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