In a glimmer of hope for a country that has seen so much pain, the Philippines will potentially legalize medical marijuana by this June.
Congressman Rodito Albano, who is the creator of a promising new bill, is hoping to have approval of the measure before the end of the first session of Congress this coming summer.
“I think the majority will vote for it. There’s a strong clamor now to support the bill,” he said in an interview with the Manila Bulletin.
The country’s House Committee on Health has created a technical working group to go through the provisions of Bill 180, which would effectively legalize medicinal cannabis in the Philippines.
If adopted into law, this important document would provide some logical reform in a country that is currently in the rips of one of the most violent drug wars in human history.
Albano is hopeful that the country’s President, Rodrigo Duterte, will not see the bill as an excuse to legalize marijuana but as a way for patients in the Asian nation to receive a valuable form of medicine for those with serious and debilitating diseases.
Although the Philippines currently has a government-sanctioned “war” against drug users and sellers, complete with the provision of approved extrajudicial killings by everyday citizens, President Duterte has stated he is in favor of medical cannabis.
For the citizens of the Philippines who currently use marijuana illegally to treat their illnesses, but are deathly afraid of being targeted and killed, a June vote cannot come soon enough.