The Minister-designate for Interior, Ambrose Dery has stated that the legalisation of cannabis in the country was done for industrial purposes and not meant for recreational use.
Answering a question during his vetting on Tuesday, Mr Dery indicated that the Narcotics Control Commission Bill 2019 which was passed by Parliament in 2020 was mainly for health and industrial use.
He indicated that the new law granted licenses for the cultivation of cannabis of not more than 0.3 percent Tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) to assist the country derive economic and health benefits from the substance.
“Mr Chairman we need to analyze what the elements in there (Narcotics Control Commission law) are. The impression out there is we have legalised cannabis for recreational use but that is not the case.
“Because to cultivate the cannabis, one will need a license and what you cultivate must contain 0.3% THC and you must show that you are going to use it for industrial purposes,” he explained.
The Nandom MP clarified that growing and smoking cannabis of more than 0.3 per cent THC remains illegal in the country.
The Interior Minister-designate further called for a rehabilitation programme for users of marijuana who may have developed psychological disorders as a result.
According to him, these individuals need to be rehabilitated and not criminalised as is the norm in the country.
For cultivators, Mr Dery proposed that agencies and Non-Governmental Organisations must assist government find alternative jobs for them to stop their illegal activities.
“Somebody has cultivated narcotics for years and has made money, it is not going to take them and throw them away. So we have to involve agencies to assist us to find alternative livelihoods for those who cultivate narcotics,” he told Parliament’s Appointments Committee.