Kibra Member of Parliament Kenneth Okoth has issued a notice of motion aimed at legalising bhang (marijuana).
In the notice of motion addressed to Speaker Justin Muturi, Okoth proposes that the growth and use of marijuana is decriminalised and amnesty measures instituted for the removal of criminal records against citizens with prior convictions of marijuana use.
“The proposed bill seeks to ensure inter alia that there is regulation for growth and safe use of marijuana and hemp including the registration of growers, producers, manufacturers and users; with special focus on protection of children/minors from illicit use just as we do wth tobacco and alcohol,” says Okoth.
Okoth argues that the bill will ensure that there is research and policy development on growth and use of marijuana and hemp for medical, industrial , textile and recreational purposes, with a focus on preservation of intellectual property for Kenyan research and natural heritage, knowledge and Kenya’s indigenous plant assets.
He also says that upon success, a progressive tax regime will increase revenue collected by the government.
On Tuesday, a ruling by South Africa’s top court legalising the personal use of cannabis (marijuana) put the nation on course to become one of only a few to legalise cannabis for recreational purposes.
Uruguay in 2013 became the first country in the world to legalise the production, distribution and consumption of marijuana.
Several other Latin American countries have legalised cannabis for medicinal use: Chile in 2015, Colombia in 2016 and Argentina, Mexico and Peru in 2017.
The Netherlands in general, and Amsterdam in particular, have tolerated the sale and use of marijuana in iconic coffee shops since 1976.