A historic bill decriminalising ganja for medical and scientific purposes in Saint Vincent and the Grenadines (SVG), is not for Saint Lucia.
That’s the position of Cannabis Movement here.
The Chairman of the organisation, Andre ‘Pancho’ de Caires, told St Lucia Times that the Cannabis Movement looked at the SVG ganja bill before it was tabled in parliament.
“We reject that bill wholeheartedly,” de Caires stated.
He said there were a lot of flaws in the SVG bill.
“That bill is not something that would really benefit the farmers of Saint Lucia,” the Cannabis Movement Chairman explained.
He disclosed that what is needed in Saint Lucia is a measure that would create a path to upward mobility for the people who have been brutalised, unfairly jailed and discriminated against because of cannabis.
“We want to give these people a chance – it is actually a project for poverty alleviation,” he told St Lucia Times.
According to de Caires, once people move from the lower end of the society into the middle class, crime will go down.
“The way we have designed it, we would be able to lower the food import bill and create jobs,” the outspoken marijuana advocate asserted.
He said Saint Lucia will adopt a holistic approach to agricultural development, using cannabis as the catalyst.
“Many of the other models – Jamaica; they got it wrong; Saint Vincent is surely getting it wrong,” de Caires declared.
He said when the bill was being debated in the SVG parliament, it divided the Rastafarian community because of the way the measure was rolled out.
“We do not want to roll out a bill like that,” he told St Lucia Times.
de Caires pointed out that the SVG bill merely focusses on medical cannabis.
According to him, it does not go the route of full legalisation.