The head of government’s marijuana commission has said that decriminalization of the drug will still come with a penalty for users who breach the law.
Samantha Marshall laid down the proposed ground rules for decriminalization as she addressed a marijuana consultation here on Tuesday.
She told those gathered at the parliament building that users who think decriminalization means free use are wrong.
“A lot of persons thought that decriminalisation simply meant that would not be penalised for the use. Decriminalisation as we understand it is that you will not be given a criminal charge but of course you will be ticketed,” Marhsall said.
She said a necessary fine will be determined.
The marijuana committee did not agree to smoking in public places nor that people should have weed on them in a public place.
“The use of that substance should be in your private home,” Marshall told those gathered for the consultations.
Antigua plans to decriminalise up to 10 grams of marijuana this year.
Rastafarians will be able to use the herb as part of their religion and the public will be able to grow “at least three plants” for personal use per household.
The government also intends to set up a committee for the use of marijuana for medicinal purposes and to partner with UWI “to find out what additional benefits it could provide for our people.”
The committee also proposes “a national council” to deal with the issue of growing marijuana.
“And for that council to consider to whom licenses should be granted to allow them to grow marijuana,” Marshall said adding that NGO’s will also form part of the council.
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