South African Parliament has passed a bill to legalise the cultivation of marijuana for medicinal purposes.
The bill which will commence in April, 2017, was announced by the Medicines Control Council and the Department of Health in Parliament, late last week.
The resolve comes after the Parliament’s health committee accepted to implement the Medical Innovation Bill. A bill which was proposed by late Dr. Mario Ambrosini of Inkatha Freedom Party in 2013.
Dr. Mario, in 2014 committed suicide after he was refused an orthodox medical treatment in favour of alternative medicine, including medical marijuana to treat his lung cancer.
Speaking on the new development Mr. Singh of the IFP said: “This heralds a great step forward for public access and research into the use of medicinal cannabis. I feel a great sense of relief. I must thank the Department for taking up this issue with such passionate concern for our people. What matters now is that the Department ensures that access to medicinal
cannabis will not be restricted to the rich, but that anyone who needs it will be able to afford it, and get it.”
The medicine will be specifically prescribed for patients with muscle spasm and severe chronic pain.
The country’s Health Department said it will publish guidelines for the medicine by the end of the year while guidelines for its growth for medicinal use will be unveiled in February next year.