Ireland is set to legalize marijuana for the medicinal use after the government said on Thursday it would not block the first reading of a bill that is backed by all other parties. The marijuana Bill entitled with ‘The Cannabis for Medicinal Use Regulations Bill 2016’ was passed in Ireland's lower house without a vote. It is also expected to pass through the Dail, Ireland’s principal house.
If passed, the Bill will legalize and regulate marijuana products for those suffering serious illnesses like cancer, epilepsy, multiple sclerosis and fibromyalgia, as well as people who are suffering from chronic pain. It has proposed to allow patients to buy oils, sprays and tablets made from the drug to alleviate their pain.
TD Gino Kelly, who put the bill forward on behalf of the “People Before Profit Alliance (PBPA)” stated that he is hopeful the medical profession would soon support the drug's use. “If finalized, it would give doctors the power to decide if their patients would benefit from the drug, he said.
"It's been overwhelming, not only in the Dail, but to see the people who have contacted us and who are trying to access medical marijuana for themselves or their children," Kenny, told national broadcaster RTE.
Health Minister Simon Harris however said, he would seek some amendments at a later stage pending a review of scientific and clinical advice regarding the value of marijuana as a medicine that was commissioned earlier this month.
Harris said he wanted to remove references from the bill that could have the effect of making it legal for anyone to possess marijuana in order to avoid accidentally making the drug legal for recreational use.
The move would see Ireland join countries like Italy, the Czech Republic and Australia, which have all relaxed their laws to use marijuana on medical grounds.