Recently, Juan Manuel Santos, President of Colombia endorsed newly introduced legislation which will legalize marijuana for therapeutic and medicinal in this drug war afflicted Andean nation.
Santos, who is a proponent of rethinking prohibitionist drug rules, made an announcement at a policy forum in the capital of Colombia, Bogota. This was his first major statement of drug policy since he won re-election. Santos further added that a governing coalition senator introduced a bill last month, which is a compassionate and practical measure for reducing the anxiety and pain of patients having terminal illnesses, however, also a way to begin to strip the role of intermediary from the criminal’s hands between the substance and the patient that enables them for relieving their suffering.
Uruguay has approved to legalize marijuana and the justice minister of Jamaica announced in June plans to legalize marijuana for medical and religious purposes and decriminalize the ownership of amounts up to 57 grams.
Sen. Juan Manuel Galan, introduced the medicinal use bill. In 1989, Juan Manuel’s father was assassinated by cocaine traffickers. Juan told The Associated Press that other states in the region considering same measures include Chile, Brazil and Argentina. Juan said his aim is to have his bill that is going to put the medical marijuana distribution under the government control, gains final legislative approval next year in June.
The director of the Drug Policy Alliance in New York, Ethan Nademann said that some U.S. countries as well as states such as Canada and Israel are well advanced in providing government-administered legalize marijuana for medical use, when a bill was introduced in the Central American nation of Costa Rica last week.
The marijuana plantations in Colombia help to enrich right-wing paramilitary bands and leftist rebels alike, though cocaine is a big business for them. General Ricardo Restrepo, who is the commander of counter drug police of Colombia told the AP that currently the country has around 390 hectares (1.5 square miles) of marijuana fields. A pound of this field costs at $ 230.
According to U.N, Colombia is the second largest marijuana (cocaine) producing country after Peru. Therefore, the endorsement of marijuana by the President of Colombia is helping to legalize marijuana.