CHAIRPERSON SAYS BRITISH AMERICAN TOBACCO WILL BE INVITED FOR CONSULTATION WHEN COMMITTEE DEALS WITH TOBACCO AMENDMENT BILL

Parliament, The Chairperson of the Portfolio Committee on Health, Dr Sibongiseni Dhlomo, said the meeting with the British American Tobacco South Africa (BAT South Africa) delegation was merely about to recognise that BAT South Africa has issues that it would like to raise, and that it comes from an industry that might be affected by the decisions that Parliament might take with regard to the Tobacco Amendment Bill.

The meeting, in which the BAT delegation was led by Mr Johnny Moloto, took place on 23 July this year. Dr Dhlomo said the meeting was just to understand the industry, as to how it operates and functions. However, BAT South Africa did not wait to have a formal meeting with the entire portfolio committee to raise its concerns with regard to issues that might affect the tobacco industry.

I did indicate to the BAT South Africa delegation that at a particular time when this matter of Tobacco Amendment Bill comes in, consultation with people and companies like them which might be directly affected by the decisions that we might make, will be invited so that we can exhaust the issues that they will like to raise, said Dr Dhlomo.

I was, however, happy to learn from them that they too are concerned about the toxins that are in nicotine and their harmful effects on people, and they will support any move to get other processes to move from, but the full discussion will take place when they make their formal presentation to the committee, he said.

Source: Parliament of the Republic of South Africa