Supreme Court to deliver judgment on FDA’s ban on celebrity alcohol endorsement today

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The Supreme Court is expected to deliver its judgment in the case requesting cancellation of Food and Drugs Authority (FDA)’s directive against alcoholic advertisement by celebrities today, June 19.

This is after a seven-member panel of the Supreme Court chaired by Chief Justice Gertrude Torkornoo deferred judgment on the matter for the second time.

The Food and Drugs Authority (FDA) in 2015 effected a directive meant to regulate the use of alcohol among Ghanaians. However, aspects of their guidelines prevent celebrities from advertising for alcoholic beverages.

The Authority had explained that due to the influential nature of these showbiz personalities, alcoholic advertisements they are involved in could push minors into alcoholism.

Representing the plaintiff Mark Darlington Osae was Bobby Banson from the Robert Smith Law Group while the Food and Drugs Authority was represented by Justine Amenuvor.

 

On November 11, 2022, Mark Darlington Osae, the manager of Reggie ‘N’ Bollie and Skrewfaze, filed a writ at the Supreme Court, describing the FDA’s 2015 regulations against alcoholic advertisement by celebrities as discriminatory against the creative arts industry.

The writ indicates that the FDA directive which orders that, “no well-known personality or professional shall be used in alcoholic beverage advertising,” is inconsistent with and in contravention of articles 17(1) and 17 (2) of the 1992 Constitution.

He contends that, Articles 17(1) and 17 (2) of the 1992 Constitution guarantee equality before the law and prohibit discrimination against persons on grounds of social or economic status, occupation, among others, and consequently makes the directive null, void, and unenforceable.

Creative industry people including Wendy Shay, Shatta Wale, Brother Sammy, Kuami Eugene, and Camidoh, have all spoken against the law and called on powers that be to repeal it, prior to the court action initiated by Mark Darlington.

According to the stakeholders of the culture and creative industries, endorsements or advertisement of alcoholic beverages is one of the very few income streams available to them at present, therefore, any law that restricts their engagement in such activities robs them of their livelihood.

 

Source: Myjoyonline.com


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Kennedy Mornah is an Award Winning Ghanaian Journalist with over two decades of experience in the Ghanaian Media landscape spanning the electronic, print and digital media. He is a Media Consultant, a Corporate MC, Radio and TV Host, Founder and Publisher of the Maritime and Transport Digest Newspaper, Businessman, a Go getter and an optimist. He has worked for renowned media organizations including Diamond Fm in Tamale, Luv Fm in Kumasi, Oman Fm in Accra and Starr Fm in Accra In 2017 he received the Reporter of the Year Award at the Ghana Shippers Awards in Accra, Ghana.

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