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Ghana legalizes cannabis for health and industrial purposes

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Ghana has legalized the use of cannabis for health and industrial purposes as it joins other African countries hoping to derive economic and health benefits from the substance.

On Friday the country’s Parliament passed into law the Narcotics Control Commission Bill, 2019.

The law now makes the country’s Narcotics Control Board (NACOB) a Commission with enhanced powers to oversee the industrial use of some narcotic substances.

The Commission however will have the mandate to control and eliminate the trafficking of prohibited narcotic drugs to ensure public safety.

Health experts have always campaigned for addicts of narcotic drugs to be properly rehabilitated and not treated as criminals.

The new law makes provision for that as well now classifying drug abuse a public health issue.

With the legalization of Cannabis for industrial and health purposes, Ghana joins countries like Malawi, Zimbabwe and South Africa who are changing their laws on narcotics.

Ghana’s new laws will make room for cannabis to be used to make medicines and hemp fibres.

Hemp fibres are used to make clothes, biofuel, paper and other products.

Ghana is hoping to rake in some revenue as well when industrial production of cannabis begins.

Industrial deals already signed

In Ghana there is already the Hemp Association of Ghana (HAG) which has signed a deal with a Ghanaian-owned Cannabis business operator based in Portugal.

The deal will gross a staggering $ 56 million in five years from merely cultivating and exporting industrial hemp from a land size approximating 100 acres.

It will rake in around $2.8 million per harvest of HAG’s industrial hemp on the planned 100 acres.

Taxes to the Ghanaian government could gross over $ 10 million from just 100 acres of industrial hemp if the authorities evaluate the industrial potential of the plant taking the world by storm currently.

President of the Hemp Association of Ghana Nana Kwaku Agyemang told Africa Feeds that “We seem to get lost in this issue of getting high, and all we can talk about as Ghanaians is smoking.

As President of the Hemp association of Ghana, we are not promoting smoking, we are promoting industry, we are promoting cleaning up the environment, we are promoting creating a new revenue stream for government in terms of taxing from cultivation and export and we are taking about promoting medicines that are far better than opioids, medicines that cannot kill you because no one has died from taking cannabis.”

Cannabis Sativa is used for over 50,000 industrial uses, including being used as a cheaper alternative to cotton, paper car dashboards, and building houses and for medicinal purposes.

The Global Cannabis market is estimated currently at over US$ 100 billion and estimate for the next five years peg the market size at a staggering $ 300 billion.

Source: Africafeeds.com

 

NEWS

Akufo-Addo speaks on James Town clashes

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President Nana Akufo-Addo has condemned the weekend clashes between supporters of the governing New Patriotic Party (NPP) and the National Democratic Congress (NDC) in the Odododiodio constituency.

For him, those without a message resort to violence and intimidation.

Addressing a durbar organised by the Ga Traditional Council at James Town as part of his tour of the Greater Accra region, President Akufo-Addo called for total rejection of electoral violence before, during and after the general election.

The NPP parliamentary candidate for the constituency, Nii lante Bannerman pledged to promote peace and appealed to his opponent to do same.

What was supposed to be a peace walk on Sunday turned bloody when NPP youth clashed with their NDC counterparts.

Reports suggest that the NDC, after hearing their opponents had canceled a ‘float’ due to time clash, hit the streets only to be greeted with stones and beer bottles.

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NEWS

Armed Robbers Play With Private Parts Of Our Wives – Nsuta Birim Drivers Cry

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Residents of Nsuta – Birim in the Sekyere Central District of the Ashanti region have said some armed robbers in the area have resulted in putting their fingers in the private parts of women in the area.

The armed robbers who operate on the Nsuta-Birim-Jeduako road according to the residents do not only rob them but use their fingers on the private part of their victims who are women.

Speaking to OTEC News Kwame Agyenim Boateng, commercial drivers who work in the area said they have grounded their vehicles for the past one week due to the rampant robbery cases recorded in the area.

They disclosed that robbers in the past months have consistently attacked drivers and traders with sophisticated guns and machetes killing three persons with one sustaining severe machete injuries.

“We are tired of the armed robbery operations in the area, they beat men with guns and machete after “fingering” our wives,” one of the drivers cried.

“We had to park our cars for over one week due to how the robbers were chasing us on daily basis, we have reported the matter to Nsuta police on several cases but nothing has been done about the situation.”

The situation they added has brought untold hardship to them as traders can no longer go about their normal trading activities to supply foodstuffs and goods in both Birim and Jeduako Communities.

The residents have therefore called on authorities in the area to help curb the menace for peace to prevail in the area.

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Ghana Not Back To HIPC – Oppong Nkrumah

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Minister of Information, Kojo Oppong Nkrumah, has debunked claims that Ghana has once again been ranked in the category of Highly Indebted Poor Countries (HIPC).

According to him, the numerous publications making rounds on social media purporting that the country has returned to HIPC is false.

Speaking at the Nation Building Updates on Tuesday in Accra, the Minister noted that because the country is approaching a general election in December, there is a deliberate attempt to discredit the work government has done since assuming office in 2017 to revive the economy.

He said “there are suggestions being spread particularly on social media that Ghana has been declared HIPC again and I am sure you would have noticed that a lot of persons are sharing materials on social media that the IMF or World Bank has declared Ghana HIPC or listed Ghana as one of the HIPC countries and it is a suggestion that the economy is not as good a shape that we claim it is.

“For the avoidance of doubt and because we have also mentioned that we are aware that some persons in the weeks ahead of the elections will seek to spread a lot of false information and fake news, it is important to quickly respond to it right here and right now. Categorically we say to you it is not true that Ghana has been declared HIPC or has been added to the list of HIPC countries,” he added.

The HIPC was a group of 39 developing countries with high levels of poverty and debt overhang who qualified for financial assistance from the World Bank, the International Monetary Fund and other multilateral, bilateral and commercial creditors between 1996 and 2001. It was designed to ensure the reduction in the debt levels of poor and indebted countries.

TheMinister emphasized that the HIPC was a programme limited to a particular point in time that Ghana and a number of African countries applied, benefited, exited and was done with it.

“The publication out there list the countries that participated and qualified for it. Currently, there is no HIPC programme for any country to qualify for so if anybody is spreading that and adding to it a narrative that suggest that Ghana is now a highly indebted poor country and has been listed on an IMF or World Bank publication as such.

However, the Minister encouraged the general public to disregard such publications. He also admonished the media to be circumspect and thoroughly conduct background checks before publishing news items.

 

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