, NAIROBI, Kenya, Jan 5 – The High Court will on Friday hear a petition seeking to reverse the imposition of the ban on shisha smoking by Health Cabinet Secretary Cleopa Mailu.
The application was filed by 15 dealers who contend that the ban has put many jobs at stake and that the situation is difficult, since they are struggling to take their children to school.
They are seeking the court’s intervention to save investors from making losses.
They also argued that despite being stakeholders, they were never consulted before the ban was implemented.
In a gazette notice, Mailu banned the importation, manufacture, advertising and sale of shisha in the country.
In the legal notice dated December 28, the health CS warned that anyone found contravening the control of shisha smoking rules will be “liable to a fine not exceeding Sh50,000, or to imprisonment for a term not exceeding six months, or to both.”
If the offence, contravention or default is of a continuing nature, a further fine not exceeding Sh1,000 for each day it continues will be imposed as contemplated in section 163 of the Public Health Act.
Shisha includes tobacco products that may be flavoured or non-flavoured that are consumed using a single or multi-stemmed smoking instrument that contains water or other liquid through which the smoke passes before reaching the smoker and whose syrup tobacco content includes molasses, honey vegetable, glycerol and fruit flavours including apple, grape, lemon and mint.
The World Health Organisation recently revealed that smoking shisha poses grave health risks as the smoke of 100 or more cigarettes is inhaled in a single session.