The Office of the Attorney General has completed drafting legislation for the decriminalisation of marijuana.
Attorney General Faris Al-Rawi made the disclosure during a press conference at his office in Port-of-Spain, on Wednesday.
Al-Rawi said he would now have to seek Cabinet’s approval for the draft legislation before it is tabled in Parliament and debated.
He did not give timeline for completing the process.
“I cannot be presumptive of what Cabinet would have to say but I am very pleased to say that after significant public consultation and the amount of work we have done, we are on track for our commitments on this matter,” Al-Rawi said.
While Al-Rawi did not divulge details on the provisions of the proposed legislation, he did reveal that it would feature decriminalisation for possession of small amounts of marijuana and regulatory framework for production, distribution and consumption of medical marijuana.
Al-Rawi also claimed that the legislation would seek to amend the Dangerous Drugs Act and food and beverage regulations, which both currently criminalises possession of marijuana.
Speaking on the issue in December, last year, Prime Minister Dr Keith Rowley initially suggested that the legislation would take effect from June, this year.
Considering that the phase the legislation is currently in, it is likely that the Government would be able to stick to its deadline and would have to complete the process, later this year.
Government’s move to introduce decriminalisation of marijuana comes after numerous regional countries effected same. Last year, Caricom’s Regional Commission on Marijuana delivered a detailed report, in which it recommended decriminalisation in member states.
Reporter: Derek Achong