House sits today, ganja law on agenda

KINGSTON, Jamaica — The House of Representatives resumes this afternoon with the ganja law, and proposals from its Standing Orders to revise the format of debates and other exchanges between Government and Opposition, high on the agenda.

Debate on the Dangerous Drugs (Amendment) Act, often referred as the ganja law, is to be piloted in the House starting today, by Minister of National Security, Peter Bunting.

The Bill was passed in the Senate on February sixth, piloted by Minister of Justice, Senator Mark Golding, under intense scrutiny from the Opposition, during a seven-hour debate. It was eventually passed with five amendments, and was tabled in the House of Representatives on February 10.

It seeks to amend the Dangerous Drugs Act to modify penalties for possession of ganja in specified quantities and the smoking of ganja in specific quantities and circumstances, as well as a scheme of licences, permits and other authorisations for medical, therapeutic and scientific purposes.

The House will also debate the report of its Standing Orders Committee on proposed changing to the standing orders; changes to the budget and sectoral debates; and introduction of a new debate in mid-session on constituency issues.

Minister of Finance and Planning Dr Peter Phillips will also seek approval to withdraw additional funds from the Capital Development Fund (CDF), which is financed by the bauxite levy; and Minister of Education, Ronald Thwaites, will make a statement on an education issue.


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