Sunday, 14 July

FDA ban on celebrity alcohol ads: SC to deliver judgment today

General News
Supreme Court

The Supreme Court is set to deliver its judgment today, Wednesday, 19 June 2024, on the highly debated case challenging the Food and Drugs Authority (FDA)'s directive prohibiting celebrities from advertising alcoholic beverages.

This follows a second deferment of judgment by a seven-member panel chaired by Chief Justice Gertrude Torkornoo.

The FDA's 2015 directive aims to curb alcohol consumption among Ghanaians, particularly minors, by restricting celebrity endorsements of alcoholic products.

The Authority argued that the influential nature of celebrities could inadvertently promote alcoholism among young people.

Mark Darlington Osae, the manager of music artists Reggie 'N' Bollie and Skrewfaze, filed a writ on November 11, 2022, challenging the FDA’s regulations.

Represented by Bobby Banson from the Robert Smith Law Group, Osae argued that the directive is discriminatory against the creative arts industry.

He contends that the ban violates Articles 17(1) and 17(2) of the 1992 Constitution, which guarantee equality before the law and prohibit discrimination based on social or economic status, occupation, among other grounds.

Mr. Osae's writ states that the FDA's directive, which prohibits "well-known personalities or professionals" from participating in alcoholic beverage advertisements, is inconsistent with constitutional provisions and should therefore be deemed null and void.

Prominent figures in the creative industry, including Wendy Shay, Shatta Wale, Brother Sammy, Kuami Eugene, and Camidoh, have publicly opposed the FDA's regulations.

They argue that endorsements and advertisements for alcoholic beverages are critical income sources for artists.

"Any law that restricts our engagement in such activities robs us of our livelihoods," said one industry stakeholder.


Source: Adiku