Ban gives tobacco illegal drug status in South Africa - News - Gadsden Times

CAPE TOWN, South Africa (AP) ” The message was dropped into a WhatsApp group used by suburban moms in South Africa. Amid the grumblings over homeschooling during lockdown, one mom went off topic: ‘Does anyone know where to get illegal cigarettes? I just need a few. I’m desperate.’

She emphasized her anguish with an emoji, a face with eyes bulging and tongue hanging out.

The ‘desperate mama,’ as she described herself, is one of 9 million smokers in South Africa affected by the government’s decision in late March to ban the sale of all tobacco products, ostensibly to help protect…

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