UN leader Ban Ki-moon while launching a summit on everyday diseases killing tens of millions each year accused big business of putting public health at risk “to protect their own profits.”
“There is a well-documented and shameful history of certain players in industry who ignored the science — sometimes even their own research — and put public health at risk to protect their own profits,” Ban Ki-moon said.
Ban said most industry giants have “acted responsibly” but added: “That is all the more reason we must hold everyone accountable — so that the disgraceful actions of a few do not sully the reputation of the many which are doing such important work to foster our progress.”
Ban called upon corporations that profit from selling processed foods to children “to act with the utmost integrity.”
“I refer not only to food manufacturers, but also the media, marketing and advertising companies that play central roles in these enterprises,” he told the summit.
“Those who profit from alcohol sales have to do their part to promote moderation in alcohol consumption. And we can all work to end tobacco use.”
Zimbabwe’s President Robert Mugabe called on rich countries to help poor nations to “ensure access to medicines, appropriate technology transfer and further training for our health personnel” to counter the diseases.