Cannabis Bill Down for Second and Third Readings


Monday 19th November, 2018-The House of Representatives will convene tomorrow for the second and third readings of the Cannabis Bill 2018.

The bill seeks to legalize the use of cannabis for medicinal and sacramental purposes.

Government is forging ahead with the plan and has highlighted the economic benefits that can be derived from the herb being used for medicinal purposes.

In Cabinet notes last month, Chief of Staff in the Office of the  Prime Minister, Ambassador Lionel ‘Max’ Hurst reported that a legal draftsman and a consultant expert were working on the draft bill.

The new draft legislation seeks to make lawful the cultivation, harvesting, transportation, and processing of cannabis into medicines.

The draft law, in its first part, makes a special provision for cannabis to be lawfully used in religious rituals by the men and women of the Rastafarian faith.

In its second part, the draft law seeks to ensure that certain standards and safeguards are included in order to enable specially licensed farms to grow plants that may vary in their strength (or presence) of certain substances including THC, the psychotropic substance.

The law also ensures that a tightly regularized system for dispensing the medicines is put in place.

The Cabinet is given ultimate control under the draft law, in order to ensure flexibility in responding to any changes that may have to be made. There are more than 80 pages of Regulations. The draft law is expected to be presented to Parliament for its second and third readings before the end of the year.