• June 19, 2024

Hoist with his own petard

 Hoist with his own petard

Derek Yach

The World Conference on Tobacco or Health (WCTOH) has said that anyone affiliated with ‘Philip Morris International’s Foundation for a Smoke-free World’ is ineligible to attend its 17th conference, and will not be admitted.

The 17th conference is due to be held in Cape Town, South Africa, on March 7-9.

‘It will unite researchers, academics, non-governmental organisations, civil society, scientists, healthcare professionals and public officials working on all aspects of tobacco control from more than 100 countries,’ the WCTOH said in a note posted on its website.

On another part of the website, under the heading, Key Information, the WCTOH said its statement on those affiliated with the Foundation was ‘a reiteration of the core conference admission policy’. ‘Affiliations with tobacco entities (current and/or during the past five years) will make an individual ineligible to attend or present at the conference,’ it said.

‘This policy is aligned with the World Health Organization’s Framework Convention on Tobacco Control (FCTC), Article 5.3, which states in its guidelines: “There is a fundamental and irreconcilable conflict between the tobacco industry’s interest and public health policy interests”.’

The founder and president-designate of the Foundation, Dr. Derek Yach (pictured), was one of the people who were responsible for initiating the FCTC.