At the recent Conservative party conference it was announced by Prime Minister, David Cameron, that it would be a "jolly wheeze" to make cigarettes available on prescription. Many of his fellow party members asked him to "packet in".
In what is said to be the Prime Minister's greatest idea since BIG society, it will boost the morale of the public and will help to prolong the life of the workforce who have been told that they will have to work far beyond the retirement age of 65 years old. Has Mr Cameron done a U-turn and on smoking - is he saying that that smoking is good for you?
Well... not really! You see, scientists have now discovered that smoking could truly be beneficial because they have found a chimpanzee who smoked, that died at the age of 52 whereas they would have expected it to die at 40.
"Because chimpanzees are very closely related to human beings, it is highly likely that we can prolong our age by smoking - having regular amounts of nicotine can keep all kinds of viruses at bay." said one leading scientist.
Charlie had been acquired from a circus at the age of 10 and was released into captivity over 40 years ago. The Simian soon became the star attraction of a South American zoo.
In Seine News was on hand to interview Charlie's keeper, 70-year-old Pablo Ramirez who had looked after the ape ever since he was introduced to the zoo. Pablo said; "when we first had Charlie, he seemed to be coughing quite a lot and really thought that it was just the clear Brazilian air and that he would soon acclimatise. I am a smoker myself and it had the same effect on me when I first moved here."
"Although the coughing had eased, the ape kept rattling his cage and pointing towards the camel enclosure - he was quite agitated. He would only calm down when I brought him his dinner of apples and bananas. It was at these times that I would have a smoke."
"Within a few weeks of establishing this ritual, I noticed that every mealtime a cigarette would disappear from my packet. In became apparent that the chimp was stealing them from me at least one a day, sometimes two a day. The monkey started to display nicotine stains on his fingers and his breath began to smell worse than normal. Obviously he had developed a penchant for tobacco products. Now I know why he was pointing towards the camel enclosure - I believe that his favourite cigarettes were camel!"
"This soon became a habit and although the zoo owners forbade the animals from smoking, it did not stop our Charlie! He would sit in his armchair, looking very relaxed until one of the spectators would throw a lighted cigarette into the enclosure. Following this performance, Charlie would smoke up to 40 a day - he was hooked!"