The Nigerian government, in collaboration with Development Gateway (DG), a non-profit data for development organization, developed the Tobacco Control Data Initiative (TCDI) website which creates a “one stop shop” that would allow stakeholders and the general public to access relevant and up-to-date data to advance tobacco control legislation in the country.
In a statement released in Abuja, Development Gateway said the TCDI is a response to the increased use of tobacco products in Nigeria and the various dangers it portends for the general public, especially young people. According to the Development Gateway, the TCDI became necessary due to the staggering statistics on tobacco consumption in Nigeria.
“At least 16,100 Nigerians die each year from tobacco-related diseases. 3.2 million Nigerians aged 15-49 used tobacco in 2018; and around 200,000 smokers are women (NDHS, 2018). As global tobacco consumption declines, by 2030 the number of smokers in Africa is expected to increase by nearly 40% from 2010 levels.
“This is the highest expected increase in the world; particularly alarming when juxtaposed with the fact that Nigeria is a center of tobacco production and was the third largest exporter of cigarettes in 2018 (Africa’s Tobacco Epidemic, Tobacco Tactics, 2020).
The organization says the TCDI would fill the data gap in tobacco control, enabling lawmakers and policymakers to use correct data to inform public health policy.
“There is evidence that some legislative policies reduce the use of tobacco products. Through their research, the TCDI team identified common themes in the data landscape.
“These relate to concerns about the accuracy, comparability, timeliness and accessibility of data. As a result, the TCDI team understands data needs and gaps, has identified existing data and developed the TCDI Nigeria website which enables decision makers to use essential data to inform tobacco control policy more effectively. . ”
Speaking further, the Development Gateway said the website would use primary and secondary data to present tobacco control information in a user-friendly format with charts, facts and success stories.
“Together, the partners have co-designed a publicly accessible website (https://nigeria.tobaccocontroldata.org/) that aims to meet key decision-making needs. The website provides stakeholders from government, civil society, academia and the general public with reliable and up-to-date evidence to promote tobacco control and public health.
“It draws on both primary and secondary data sources and presents tobacco control information in user-friendly formats such as charts, infographics, myths and facts, and success stories.
The website will feature six themes: smoking prevalence, tobacco harm, illicit trade, taxation, industry interference and shisha use. The website will be updated with new information as it becomes available during the program.
In developing the dashboard, the Development Gateway said it used existing data as well as interviews with key members of the tobacco control community.
“Before creating the TCDI Nigeria website, the TCDI team assessed existing data and stakeholder needs through hour-long interviews with key members of the tobacco control community.
“Learnings from the evaluation were validated with stakeholders during a workshop in November 2020 before the start of technical development in early 2021. The website was created through an agile co-design process in close consultation with key tobacco control stakeholders in Nigeria including the Federal Ministry of Health, Nigerian Tobacco Research Group, Federal Revenue Inland Services.
Partners working on the scorecard include the Federal Ministry of Health, the University of Cape Town’s Economics of Excise Goods (REEP) research unit and the Development Gateway.