Key dates in the Kenyan tobacco-control journey


Key dates in the Kenyan tobacco-control journey


Date Range
Format: mm/dd/yyyy
Jun, 2004

Kenya Ratifies WHO-FCTC

Kenya signed and ratified the World Health Organization’s Framework Convention on Tobacco Control (WHO-FCTC) in 2004.

Agitation for measures to curb the growing tobacco epidemic in the country started way back before the signing and ratification of the international treaty. It’s however important to note that the greatest milestone was Kenya signing and ratifying the WHO FCTC in 2004 after prolonged advocacy by public health advocates in the country.

Jan, 2006

KETCA is Born

KETCA is always at the forefront in fighting against tobacco industry interference with effective implementation of tobacco control policies in the country.

Over the years, the Alliance has built a robust network of champions spanning from government actors, CSOs, faith-based organizations, academia, media and members of the public.

KETCA has also successfully trained over 5,000 people on tobacco control. Similarly, the Alliance has build over 500 tobacco control champions in the country.

Aug, 2007

Kenya Enacts Tobacco Control Act

Since its inception in 2006, the Alliance was very instrumental in the push for the domestication of the WHO-FCTC through the enactment of a national Tobacco Control law – the Tobacco Control Act 2007 (CAP 245A).

After the ratification of the WHO FCTC, the journey to domesticate the convention through a law took center stage and in June of 2007, Kenya made yet another milestone in enacting the Tobacco Control Act.

Dec, 2014

Kenya Gazettes Tobacco Control Regulations

To operationalize key provisions of the Act, Tobacco Control Regulations were developed in 2014 and later subjected to a long legal battle by the tobacco industry.

KETCA joined the government to successfully defend the Regulations at the High Court, the Court of Appeal and finally the Supreme Court, a battle that took over 5 years.

Dec, 2017

Kenya Imposes a Total Ban on Shisha

To curb the growing shisha/ waterpipe menace in the country, KETCA successfully marshalled other pro-health stakeholders in advocating for a total ban of the vice. In December 2017, shisha was officially banned in Kenya.

This comes several years after the National Authority for the Campaign Against Alcohol and Drug Abuse (NACADA) banned 19 flavors of shisha, KETCA, working with other key stakeholders agitated for the total ban of shisha in the country. Heeding to this call, the Ministry of Health imposed a total ban on shisha citing its threat to public health.

May, 2020

Kenya Ratifies the Protocol to Eliminate Illicit Trade on Tobacco Products

Kenya became the 59th country to ratify the protocol to eliminate illicit trade on tobacco products (ITP).

On 8th May 2020, Kenya joined 58 other countries that have ratified the protocol that seeks to eliminate all forms of illicit trade in tobacco products in line with Article 15 of the WHO’s Framework Convention on Tobacco Control by establishing a range of measures.

The ITP, itself a treaty, aims to be a coordinated international response to the problem of the illicit tobacco trade.

Mar, 2022

Kenya Launches Tobacco-Free Farms Initiative

Kenya becomes the first country to implement tobacco-free farm that aims to migrate farmers from tobacco growing to other economically viable alternatives.

Numerous studies have linked tobacco growing to health, socio-economic, and environmental challenges. To tackle this constellation of problems, WHO joined forces with the World Food Programme (WFP), the Food and Agriculture Organization, and the Kenyan government to launch the Tobacco-Free Farms project in March 2022.

Over 1,000 farmers have completely migrated from tobacco growing to Nyota beans farming, which is highly nutritious and take a shorter time to mature.

May, 2022

KETCA Chairman Bags the WNTD Award

KETCA Chairman, Mr. Joel Shunza Gitali awarded for his exemplary work and relentless efforts in fighting tobacco menace in Kenya

Every year, the World Health Organization (WHO) recognizes various tobacco control champions and entities for their relentless efforts in curbing tobacco control in their respective countries. This year (2022) during World No Tobacco Day, the KETCA chairman was among the winners who were recognized for their efforts.

A Big congratulations to Mr. Joel Gitali, KETCA Chairman


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KETCA will always be at the forefront of the tobacco-control battle in Kenya. We take our mandate seriously and endeavor to promote awareness of the dangers of tobacco use and it’s effect on the environment.

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