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Cigarettes kill – even the light and mild ones

Cigarettes kill – even the light and mild ones

Hone Harawira, MP for Te Tai Tokerau

24 September 2008

“Cigarette companies calling their products ‘light’ and ‘mild’, is like weapon factories calling their bullets ‘nice’ and ‘pleasant’,” said Hone Harawira, Maori Party MP for Tai Tokerau, and spokesman for the Tobacco Out of Aotearoa campaign.

“In both cases, they are a lie. In both cases they kill. The ONLY difference is that bullets kill you quickly.”

Harawira was responding to a statement that the Commerce Commission had warned three major tobacco companies supplying the New Zealand market that describing their cigarettes as ‘light’ and ‘mild’ was misleading.

Commerce Commission Director of Fair Trading Adrian Sparrow, said that, “the bottom line is smoking causes many diseases, including cancer. There is no such thing as a safe, or safer, cigarette.”

“I’m glad the Commission has come out with their ruling,” said Harawira.

“Sometimes I get so angry with these tobacco murderers, and government for allowing them to continue to operate, that I wish I could just come to parliament and pour buckets of dirty, filthy, stinking, poisonous cigarette tar all over the Chamber to bring home to them all, the level of death and destruction that these traffickers get away with.”

“If another country killed 4,500 New Zealanders every year, we’d be going to war,” said Harawira.

”I challenge government to declare war on the tobacco industry for killing our people, instead of holding their noses while they take the billion dollar taxes that cigarette deaths bring into government coffins/coffers.”


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