South African Parliament's health committee is all set to tighten the screws on smoking and tobacco related companies.
Three days of public hearing starting on Jan 23, is scheduled in which 16 individuals including representatives of organizations will make submissions before the committee.
Under the original act the advertising of tobacco products and the sponsorship of sports and other popular events by tobacco companies is forbidden. Many buildings in SA have already banned smoking.
After the new legislation, smokers could find that they cannot smoke even outside the doors or underneath windows of public buildings.
The Tobacco Products Control Amendment Bill pending with the committee will also restrain the marketing of tobacco products and smoking joints.
The tobacco companies often utilize clubs and beaches to host parties to promote tobacco products. The industry fears that strict legislation might increase illegal operations, inducing dealers to evade the law and sell their products without paying taxes.
The Tobacco Institute is reported saying, 'The bill is rather unfair. Tobacco products are legal and consumers have the right to make informed decisions on products they want to consume.'