Graphic health warnings on cigarette packs have been met with a mixed reception in Namibia, where they are now a requirement under an amendment to the Tobacco Control Act 2010, according to a story in The Namibian.
Some smokers who spoke to the newspaper were quoted as saying they were definitely scared and some made promises to quit when they saw the packaging.
But others said their addiction to smoking overrode their fear and they would continue to buy cigarettes anyway.
Sitting in the middle, perhaps, is 36-year-old John Karumba, who has been smoking for the past seven years and who says he changes the “casing” so that he doesn’t have to look at the scary graphics.
And one smoker, identified only as Charlie, has a short-term strategy at least. Because shops still have stocks of pre-graphic-image products, he makes sure that he asks for the ones in the old packs that do not have the graphic images.
Charlie probably summed up the attitudes of a lot of smokers who are seen as wanting to quit. “It is very discouraging to see those photos,” he said. “But I will not stop smoking now, maybe next year.”