Constitutional Court and the medical marijuana controversy

Constitutional Court and the medical marijuana controversy

Press release from 29.03.2018

Der Gebrauch von medizinischem Cannabis ist ein kontroverses Thema mit vielen starken Meinungen rund um die Welt. Die Seychellen gehören zu den Ländern, die vor kurzem das Gesetz über den Missbrauch von Drogen im Jahr 2016 geändert haben, um den Gebrauch der kontrollierten Droge für medizinische und wissenschaftliche Zwecke zu ermöglichen, und die Debatte ist nun vor das Verfassungsgericht gerückt.


Karl Schnürch

In November last year, Ralph Volcere, through his lawyer Frank Elizabeth, filed a petition with the Constitutional Court against the Minister of the Interior, Macsuzy Mondon, instructing the Minister to issue regulations to implement the Seychelles Government's amended Misuse of Drugs Act 2016, which allows the use of cannabis for medical or scientific purposes. The Act also states that the Minister shall issue regulations to implement the Act. However, attorney Frank Elizabeth argues that the Minister has not exercised his legal obligation to implement the law since June 2016, thereby violating the constitutional rights of people who want to have access to this treatment, and cites in his petition the violation of the rights of Marie-Therese Volcere, the mother of his client, who suffers from multiple sclerosis and has no access to cannabis oil for pain relief and treatment.

According to a conversation with TODAY after a court submission by the Minister of Internal Affairs' lawyer on Tuesday morning, Mr. Volcere's lawyer said he asked the court to make an order.

"I asked the court to force Minister Mondon to say who can take cannabis and what kind of disease can be treated by the regulated drug, who can import, export, plant, research and whether we need a licence to do what the Minister did not do. I have also included the Minister of Health, Jean-Paul Adam, in the case because the Minister of the Interior, in consultation with him, should be involved in the implementation of this law," said attorney Frank Elizabeth.

In response to the petitioner's case, Minister Macsuzy, through her attorney, filed a submission with the Attorney General's office, saying that the court should dismiss the case because the petitioner could not bring a case to court to compel the government to do something it did not want to do, of which the Attorney General's office raised the preliminary objection that Mr. Volcere could not ask the court to make such an order because it is a political decision that the government must make.
The court gave the lawyer until Tuesday next week to reply whether or not he agreed with the submission and to give reasons for his reply.

According to attorney Frank Elizabeth, the use of cannabis has been shown to be good for incurable diseases like cancer, multiple sclerosis, depression and even for use by drug addicts, to name a few, by scientists around the world.

"I also consulted Dr. Jivan and he said that medical marijuana can be used to treat the pain caused by cancer. He also said that right now, doctors are using morphine, which is chemical, to treat the pain," the lawyer said. "Medicinal cannabis is organic and cheaper, so why not give people in need of urgent treatment access to this plant?" Attorney Frank Elizabeth.

"By passing the law, the government recognizes the benefits of the plant. But the big question is, "How will the law be implemented if the minister hasn't done anything about it?" the lawyer concluded. Palm tree

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