SOUTH AFRICA: The Medical Innovation Bill, a bill to legalize Cannabis in South Africa for medical, economic and industrial purposes, was introduced in parliament today.
The bill was submitted by Member of Parliament, Mario GR Oriani-Ambrosini from the Inkatha Freedom Party. The Medical Innovation Bill aims to make provision for innovations in medical treatments by legalizing the use of cannabis for medical, economic and industrial purposes.
Last year Oriani-Ambrosini was diagnosed with stage four, inoperable lung cancer, which forms the background to this bill. People with life-threatening diseases such as cancer are legally denied access to a medicine that they could be growing themselves. Under current legislation, medical practitioners are legally denied the right to prescribe proven to be effective and harmless medication to their patients, which includes cannabis, on the basis that it hasn’t been approved in terms of the legally required double blind clinical studies.