At the end of last week, a bill aimed at decriminalizing the use and cultivation of cannabis was presented to the National Congress.
The bill is the result of the first International Conference on Cannabis held on July 26 in Asuncion within the National Congress. The conference was convened by the Presidency of Parliament and brought together parliamentarians and experts on industrial hemp and cannabis.
The bill, introduced by the frente Guasú, the left front, and representatives of civil society involved in the issue of cannabis, is entitled “Through which the self-cultivation, production, industrialization, marketing, use and research of the plant of Cannabis and its derivatives are comprehensively regulated and declared to be of national interest”.
A leader of Granja Madre, Juan Cabezudo, explained that “Senator Óscar Salomón, President of Congress, has called an international conference to discuss the medical and commercial opportunities generated by the use of cannabis in all its forms. »
He added that “there was the participation of relevant national institutions as well as civil society organizations such as Mamá Cultiva, the Paraguayan Cannabis Cooperative, the Paraguayan Chamber of Industrial Cannabis and Granja Madre”.
Paraguay has already legalized the production of medical cannabis and supplies several countries. However, access to medical cannabis remains complicated for patients and self-cultivation is still prohibited.
The central point of the bill presented to Congress, reported by ABCis to decriminalize the use and cultivation of cannabis.
Among the key points of the bill are the following:
1. decriminalize the Cannabis plant, its derivatives, uses and users, within the framework of an approach based on human rights guaranteed by the national Constitution, by setting administrative sanctions except in the case of related offences.
2. Declare the area of national interest, emphasizing the health of the sick and the economic rights of family farming, as well as the industrial and fiscal potential that it can represent for the country.
3. It establishes the National Institute of Cannabis (Incanna) as a state public body with the participation of civil society, endowed with broad powers to achieve the objectives of the law.
4. It authorizes self-cultivation by individuals and the creation of cultivation associations for adult and medical use of the plant and its derivatives, as well as their limited possession.
5. The bill under consideration establishes guidelines for the prevention of cannabis use by minors, as well as express restrictions on production and consumption in public spaces.
The Uruguayan model served as the basis for the project, “but with the social and economic reality of the country”, explained Juan Cabezudo, leader of the Ganja Madre association.