NCOP Calls For More Public Input on Cannabis Bill: New Deadline is 19 January 2024
The public now has until 19 January 2024 to make their final submissions on the controversial Cannabis Bill now that it has been passed by the National Assembly.
Jehran Naidoo, IOL News
8 December 2023 at 06:00:00
The National Council of Provinces (NCOP) has extended the Cannabis for Private Purposes Bill to the public for comments and suggestions after it was passed by the National Assembly last month.
This, according to Parliament spokesperson Moloto Mothapho on Monday, 4 December 2023.
“The committee has called for comments from individuals and stakeholders. The deadline is January 19, 2024,” Mothapho told IOL.
Interested parties have two options to contribute to the bill, either submit written letters with their comments or email it to the NCOP.
Written submissions need to be submitted by 19 January 2024.
To email your comments, send your letter to cannabisbill19B2020@parliament.gov.za.
The promulgation of the private cannabis bill came after the Prince judgment by the Constitutional Court in 2018, which officially recognised that South Africans had the right to possess and consume cannabis in a private capacity.
The bill was then gazetted on August 7, 2020, before being introduced to Parliament on September 1, 2020.
The effect the new bill could potentially have on children was the reason for delays in its passing by the National Assembly.
The bill is being processed by the Portfolio Committee on Justice and Correctional Service.
“The bill as tabled and deliberated on by the committee up until its meeting on September 12, 2023, did not look beyond the adult-centred focus of the private-purpose use of cannabis.
“The Constitutional Court suspended the operation of the order of constitutional invalidity for a period of 24 months for Parliament to finalise the legislative reform process. The date by which the defect must be corrected by Parliament is September 28, 2024,” Mothapo said in November, after it was passed by the National Assembly.
The government identified the cannabis and hemp industry as one of 14 priority sectors to secure investment, job creation, and support for sustainable rural livelihoods.
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