Medical marijuana allowed in Malaysia, says Health Minister

Medical marijuana allowed in Malaysia, says Health Minister

Products containing cannabis used for medicinal purposes can be imported and used in Malaysia if the product is in compliance with the requirements of the law, said Health Minister Khairy Jamaluddin.

He added that the existing acts that regulate cannabis in Malaysia are the Dangerous Drugs Act 1952, Poisons Act 1952 and the Sale of Drugs Act 1952 which do not prohibit the use of cannabis for medicinal purposes.

Khairy (above) said this in a written parliamentary reply to Muar MP Syed Saddiq Syed Abdul Rahman who had asked his ministry to clarify Malaysia’s position on the use of hemp or “medical marijuana” as one of the alternative medicines that can be offered to patients, as it has been implemented in many foreign countries and recognised by the international medical community.

Products containing cannabis should be registered with the Drug Control Authority (DCA) as prescribed by the Control of Drugs and Cosmetics Regulation 1984 under the Sale of Drugs Act, said Khairy.

"Importers must also have a licence and import permit under the Control of Drugs and Cosmetics Regulation, the Poisons Act as well as the Dangerous Drugs Act.

"The sale or retail supply for medical treatment for selected patients must be carried out by a medical practitioner registered under the Medical Act 1971 or a registered pharmacist with a Type A licence to certain individuals based on prescriptions issued by registered medical practitioners," he added.

Khairy said if there are parties who have sufficient scientific evidence to use cannabis for any medicinal purpose by taking into account the aspects of quality, safety and effectiveness, then the application to register cannabis products for medicinal purposes can be submitted to the DCA to be evaluated and registered under the Control of Drugs and Cosmetics Regulation 1984 in order to be marketed in Malaysia.

He added that cannabis is also regulated under the Single Convention on Narcotic Drugs of 1961 and listed under Schedule I of the convention.

Khairy's answer is a breakthrough moment as up until this point, the status of medical marijuana has not been clear, and distributors have even faced the death penalty for its possession.

Responding to Khairy on Twitter, Syed Saddiq said he was really impressed with the answer given by the minister and his team.

"This is a data and science-driven decision-making process. Medical cannabis is allowed when preconditions are met.

"If it can be proven via science, it can be registered and the government will facilitate," tweeted Syed Saddiq.

Earlier this week, following the violent death of a marijuana smoker at a rehab centre in Kubang Pasu, Kedah, Malaysian Awareness Society (Masa) vice-president Harish Kumar pointed out that there were three separate but related issues that were addressed as policies by the Pakatan Harapan government but not changed into law. The first was that of legalising the sale and possession of medical marijuana, which has now been addressed by Khairy. The second was that of decriminalising small quantities of possessions of drugs so that addicts can be treated as patients, not criminals. The third was the removal of the mandatory death penalty as part of the sentencing under the Dangerous Drugs Act.

The first was that of legalising the sale and possession of medical marijuana, which has now been addressed by Khairy.

The second was that of decriminalising small quantities of possessions of drugs so that addicts can be treated as patients, not criminals.

The third was the removal of the mandatory death penalty as part of the sentencing under the Dangerous Drugs Act.



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