Prime Minister, Dr Ruhakana Rugunda-the Prime Minister’s revelation points to one fact that actually Government has agreed and is ready to start issue licenses to marijuana growers and exporting companies.
PM revealed this while responding to the Marijuana matter and told the Legislators that Government will report to house with a detailed response. Over 50 firms, both foreign and local have been reported to have joined the gold rush to grow and export Cannabis commonly known as Marijuana for medicinal purposes.
This number has grown from 20 in April 2019. Government had halted the process of issuing licenses to marijuana growers after approving only two companies.Now government says that although they do not yet have a common position on marijuana, several government organs are considering it.
The matter came out in parliament yesterday during the Prime Ministers question time when Betty Bamukwasa, the Rukungiri Woman MP questioned under what framework Government was licencing growing of medicinal marijuana.
At least an Israeli Firm in June this year, Together Pharma Limited reported its first Marijuana harvest from Uganda, despite a government announcement that the license had been halted. The company reportedly completed the first harvesting of Cannabis inflorescences at its farm in Uganda on June 18, 2019, and sowed another 10 dunams on the company’s farm in Uganda on the same day.
Another company Hemp is growing medicinal marijuana in kasese district . According to the World Health Organization (WHO) several studies have demonstrated the therapeutic effects of cannabinoids for nausea and vomiting in the advanced stages of illnesses such as cancer and AIDS.
Dronabinol (tetrahydrocannabinol) has been available by prescription for more than a decade in the USA. Other therapeutic uses of cannabinoids are being demonstrated by controlled studies, including treatment of asthma and glaucoma, as an antidepressant, appetite stimulant, anticonvulsant and anti-spasmodic, among others.
However, the Narcotic Drugs and Psychotropic Substances Act 2015, specifies that persons involved in the manufacture, production, sale, or distribution of narcotic drugs or psychotropic substances commit an offence and are liable, on conviction, to a ﬁne or imprisonment of as much as five years or both.
The law also prohibits the cultivation of any plant, including cannabis, from which narcotic drugs and psychotropic substances may be extracted, without permission from the Health Minister. The National Drug Policy and Authority Act, 1993 provides that “No person shall, without the written consent of the Health Minister cultivate any plant from, which a narcotic drug can be extracted.”