Minister Of Health's Ban On Shisha: Yay Or Nay?

Image: Shisha

In other cultures, it is known as hookah, boory, hubble-bubble but in Nigeria's night-time culture, the psychedelic method for smoking flavored tobacco from various fancy pots are known as Shisha.

It is pretty popular among young frequent nightclub visitors, who find puffing and swirling in a cloud of plush smoke a cool and fun activity. There's no nightclub worth its salt in Nigeria's major cities which doesn't have it on its menu of exotic services.

Young clubbers believe your social life is dull if you don't smoke Shisha. It comes in various paraphernalia with small portable Shisha pots going for between N6,000 to N12,000 and charcoal flavors starting from N2,000.

Before the war against drug abuse went on an overdrive in Nigeria, Shisha smoking had been a most profitable business for clubs and bar proprietors.

Unlike the good vibes that welcomed the ban on the indiscriminate sale of codeine, the ban on Shisha smoking was seen as bad news to providers and smokers of Shisha.

The news of the ban hit the airwaves on the 4th of June when Minister of Health, Dr. Isaac Adewole, called on the police and all other government agencies to enforce the ban on Shisha smoking across the nation.

Providers and smokers are mad as hell about this development as the see Shisha smoking as a harmless activity which doesn't get the user high or lead to addiction, unlike codeine.

On one side, public health safety proponents welcome the ban because Shisha smoking has its own hazards like cancer, high-risk exposure to lung and heart disease and the spread of infectious diseases like tuberculosis, herpes, and hepatitis.

Smokers, however, insist Shisha isn't a controlled substance and is harmless. Even though Shisha smoking is regulated in other countries like the USA, there's no outright ban on the social activity.

So we ask young people reading this post, is the ban on Shisha smoking a welcome development in Nigeria or not? Tell us what you feel.
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