Jamaica will this year join a virtual tidal wave of countries across the globe in decriminalizing ganja, forerunner to the establishment of a medicinal marijuana industry estimated to be worth billions of dollars.http://www.jamaicaobserver.com/news/Ganja-green-light-this-year
Phillip Paulwell minister of science, technology, energy and mining.
Paulwell, who is minister of science, technology, energy and mining, told members of the task-force at a meeting last Thursday that “ganja will be decriminalized in Jamaica this year and stressed that Jamaica cannot be allowed to be left behind on the issue”. In my estimation there is nothing wrong with what Paulwell had to say regarding not being left behind in the race to decriminalize. My concern has to do with what effect this will have on the electoral process? I believe if this issue was placed on the ballot it would pass with flying colors. Most large countries which are engaged in easing Cannabis restrictions, are doing so behind serious research and preparation. This in conjunction with much greater infrastructural support to deal with any negative fall-outs to emanate from legalization.
This is a huge political freebie for the ruling People’s National Party. This issue will invariably pass muster with Jamaicans living at home and abroad. If not handled correctly this could cement the Country into a one party state for a long time to come. It is impossible for me to second guess the motives of Paulwell and the PNP . Yet it is difficult to imagine that they could not wait and have the motion placed on the ballot in the next General Elections Constitutionally due within 2 years. That would give the issue much legitimacy when decided by the people. Of course the PNP, not to pass up a political opportunity, will run with this issue all the way to the next polls. This will be the cover against a crumbling economy, corruption and graft, skyrocketing crime statistics, and an ever increasing amount of Jamaicans sliding below the poverty line. In the end this will not matter Jamaicans can all comfort themselves by getting high. Free up the weed.