STA, February 6, 2018- A group of MPs of the senior coalition Modern Centre Party (SMC) has put forward a bill envisaging full legalisation of cannabis. The use of standardised cannabis buds for medicinal purposes has been allowed in Slovenia since March 2017.
The SMC's proposal comes as the parliamentary Health Committee is due to debate a very similar motion filed by the opposition Left tomorrow.
The bill was produced by the SMC's youth wing in collaboration with the non-parliamentary Pirate Party, which has been pushing for full legalisation for a while.
According to the initiator of the motion, Simon Zajec of the SMC, the motion has been backed by 20 of the 35 SMC MPs.
It allows recreational use of cannabis, its growing in small quantities (on areas up to three square metres) and introduces a system of licences for growing, production, processing and sale.
The bill also introduces measures for oversight, prevention as well as sanctions.
The head of the Pirate Party, Rok Andree, told the press today that his party had collected more than 18,000 signatures in favour of full legalisation and had handed them over to Speaker Milan Brglez in mid-January.
He said their aim was to protect users and regulate the black market. The money that will come from legalisation can be used to raise awareness and help drug addicts, Andree added.
"We are aware that rather than resorting to repression it is better to raise public awareness of both the positive and negative consequences in this field," Zajec said.
Recently, the junior coalition Social Democrats (SD) have proposed legalising growing cannabis for medical purposes. The party presented its bill at the end of last month as a complement to the existing legislation, allowing the use of standardised cannabis buds for medicinal purposes.
Zajec said today their bill did not contradict the SD's but complemented it. The SMC-sponsored proposal deals with recreational use of cannabis and not its use for medical purposes, he explained.