Academics, doctors and activists from nongovernmental organizations gathered in Bali on Sunday to petition the government to stop the World Tobacco Asia 2014 exhibition and conference, due to be held at the Bali Nusa Dua Convention Center, according to a piece by Made Arya Kencana published in The Jakarta Globe.
“We disapprove of the forum, and we do not want it to be held in Bali or anywhere in Indonesia,” said Putu Ayu Swandewi Astuti, a lecturer at the school of public health, Udayana University, Bali.
“We have managed to gather nearly186 signatures, with supporters coming from several countries, including India, the Netherlands and Australia,” she said.
Putu said the tobacco event went against efforts by the Indonesian government to control air quality and Bali’s efforts to develop a smoke-free zone program.
“Why would we want to host those cigarette producers?” she said. “The government shouldn’t forget its commitment to minimize the danger of smoking for the sake of profit.”
A month ago, in a piece in The Jakarta Post, the program coordinator of the Bali Tobacco Control Initiative (BTCI), Made Kerta Duana, was quoted as saying that the planned WTA event in Bali was contrary to the BTCI’s commitment to encourage people to live healthy lives without cigarettes.
But Duana admitted that the local government had no authority to ban the conference being held in Bali because the permit was issued by the central government. “But we hope that at least the local government can declare that they do not support the conference,” he said.
Category: Breaking News