BONTOC, Mountain Province – Officials led the campaign on urging the smokers to quit or stop from smoking during the observance of the World No Tobacco Day last May 31.
With this year’s, “Tobacco - a threat to development”, employees from national government agencies, provincial government, municipal local government units, academe and members of the Provincial Anti-Smoking Task Force (PASTF) participated in a parade along the thoroughfares of the capital town holding placards disapproving smoking and its ill-effects to the health of the smoker and the individuals who are exposed to second hand smoke. A short program ensued at the Provincial Plaza.
Spearheaded by the Provincial Government of Mountain Province through its PASTF, the activity aimed to encourage participation and support of all government entities and other stakeholders in promoting the general welfare, health and safety of the public; encourage 24-hour period of abstinence from all forms of tobacco consumption; and intensify public awareness on the negative effects of tobacco on one’s health.
Vice-Governor Francis Tauli encouraged the smokers to stop and quit the habit of smoking by emphasizing that it destroys the health of the smoker and those who inhale the smoke.
Provincial Administrator Amador Batay-an who is also the chairperson of the PASTF, in his testimony shared to the participants his experience of being a smoker which started at the age of five and how he quitted the habit.
According to Batay-an, it was because of the health situation of his wife he instantly stopped from smoking adding quitting may not be easy but it is possible.
Governor Bonifacio Lacwasan Jr. also admitted he started to smoke at a young age and recounted one factor which helped him stop was the thought of being able to save for school needs and other productive activities rather than spending on cigarettes that damages the health.
Lacwasan added he did not experience the negative effect of smoking to his health in his younger years, but he decided to quit, not only because of his health but of his concern to his family’s health.
The governor is hopeful the observance of the World No Tobacco Day will encourage other smokers to commit themselves to stop from smoking.
Provincial Health Officer II Dr. Nenita Lizardo is optimistic more smokers are encouraged to stop from smoking with the messages and testimonies shared by the speakers.
Health Education Promotions Officer II Prima Donna Te-elan said that the smoking cessation clinic offers needed support to smokers who want to quit and are experiencing difficulty quitting. (PR)