Ghana has officially legalized the use of cannabis for health and industrial purposes hoping to derive economic and health benefits from the substance.
On Friday, 20th March 2020, the country’s Parliament approved the Narcotics Control Commission Bill, 2019.
The newly enacted law now makes the country’s Narcotics Control Board (NACOB) a Commission with special authority to take charge of the industrial use of certain narcotic substances.
The Commission, however is tasked to control and eliminate the trafficking of prohibited narcotic drugs to ensure smooth transactions for human safety.
Also, Health experts and humanitarians have always campaigned for addicts of narcotic drugs to be properly rehabilitated and not treated as criminals.
The new law makes room for that as well. Now classifying drug abuse a public health issue. Meaning they must be treated fairly as well.
Before this law was passed, Ghana’s Narcotic Drugs (Control, Enforcement and Sanction) Act, 1990, PNDC Law 236, used to criminalised narcotic drugs such as cannabis and states that anyone found in possession or importing a narcotic substance “shall on conviction be liable to imprisonment for a term of not less than 10 years.”
On the African continent, Malawi, Zimbabwe, Zambia and Lesotho, and South Africa are among the few counties that have already legalized medicinal cannabis use.