The Consumer Protection Council (CPC) on Tuesday identified with the federal government’s recent increase in excise duty on alcoholic beverages and tobacco products, stressing that it would serve as a measure to reduce the risks of abuse and disease. Similarly, the Council also applauded the President Muhammadu Buhari administration’s consideration for consumers in “granting a 90-day moratorium, and periodic incremental adjustments to ensure appropriate balance between personal consumer choices and the public interest.”

The Council’s director- general, Babatunde Irukera, who made these assertions in a statement issued yesterday in Abuja, commended “President Muhammadu Buhari for his strong leadership in addressing this vital consumer issue in a manner that is consistent with prevailing global practices.” Irukera stated that though “CPC protects the rights of all consumers, and their prerogative to make personal lifestyle choices,” it however encourages responsible consumption in all circumstances, particularly of products that may potentially have adverse effects or possibly modify behaviour in a fashion that may be harmful or inconvenient to the consumer, or others. “The Council notes that this policy was the product of consensus pursuant to broad stakeholder engagement and is motivated in large part by the federal government’s desire to reduce the risks of abuse and disease that may be associated with consumption of these products,” he submitted.