PETALING JAYA: Trust the doctor to snuff out all the longing for a puff.
Foreign Minister Datuk Seri Hishammuddin Hussein gave up smoking when doctors showed him some test results and warned him of the health consequences.
“That was seven years ago. I listened to my doctors’ advice and quit smoking immediately. And I feel so much better now, ” he said.
Grateful for the dispensed “scare”, Hishammuddin said he had been leading a healthy lifestyle ever since.
“I exercise regularly and follow a healthy diet, ” he said.
But he could not resist vaping.
“I am vaping just for fun. It is a new habit, ” he said.
Former Works Minister Datuk Seri Mohd Zin Mohamed also confessed that his doctor had frightened him into quitting.
“I had a persistent cough. My doctor said I had no other choice but to quit if I wanted to get better. That was in 1989, ” he said, adding that he gave up the habit since then.
“The doctor was right. The coughing stopped, not long after I stopped smoking, ” said Mohd Zin, who picked up the habit when he was 15.
Mohd Zin shared an anecdote about how smokers would stub out their cigarettes when they saw then prime minister Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad coming their way.
“I have seen people quickly discarding their cigarettes when they saw him approaching, ” he said.
Dr Mahathir, who is a medical doctor, would always give smokers some sound advice, said Mohd Zin.
“He would tell them ‘jangan merokok, tak baik’ (Don’t smoke, it’s not good), ” he added.
On Wednesday, the Health Ministry tweeted that mQuit, a service provided with the cooperation of NGOs and the private sector for those seeking to stop smoking, was now in its third stage of implementation from Dec 15 until 2025.
“Since its launch in 2015, the number of smokers who registered themselves has been increasing every year, ” said the ministry.