Environment Minister Banned Smoking In Public Places

A woman Smoking in South Sudan [PhotoZ Jok P Mayom]

The order, seen by Gurtong, partly reads; “In exercise of the powers conferred upon me under Article 114 read together with the provisions of Article 41 and 46 (g) of The Transitional Constitution of the Republic of South Sudan, 2011, and in order to maintain a healthy environment for the public throughout our Country, I Deng Deng Hoc Yai, Minister of Environment of the Republic of south Sudan, do here by Issue this Ministerial Order No. 23/2014 as follows”.

“Smoking in public places shall be banned effective from Tuesday 07th October 2014,” it reads

According to the order, the term “Public Places” as defined by the law is used to refer to such a place, including but not limited to a government institution, an airport, a seaport – meaning riverport obviously since South Sudan has no seaport – a hotel, a restaurant, a cinema, a theatre, a football stadium, a public park, a publictransport, and any another place where the public gather in numbers.

“Any person who violates this Ministerial Order shall be deemed to have committed a criminal offense and shall be subjected to a fine of SSP 500,” (about US$100 at current rate) the Order reads.

The few people Gurtong talked appreciated the move by the minister. A man called John applauded the order, saying it would reduced the pollution of the environment. “You know some people don’t smoke and sometimes, especially in public taxis (Mousalat), others just smoke inside the bus/taxi making non smokers inhaled the smoke passively. It is dangerous of course,” he said.

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