Albano: No need for law to legalize medical marijuana

by RG Cruz, ABS-CBN News

Posted at Feb 12 2014 03:48 AM | Updated as of Feb 12 2014 11:48 AM

MANILA -- A proponent for the legalization of medical marijuana believes he may not need to file a bill to make this happen.

According to Isabela Rep. Rodito Albano, all it may take are implementing rules and regulations from the Executive, citing Section 16 of the Dangerous Drugs Act:

“That in the case of medical laboratories and medical research centers which cultivate or culture marijuana, opium poppy and other plants, or materials of such dangerous drugs for medical experiments and research purposes, or for the creation of new types of medicine, the Board shall prescribe the necessary implementing guidelines for the proper cultivation, culture, handling, experimentation and disposal of such plants and materials.”

Albano, in a phone call, said, “Magfa-file pa rin ako ng bill pero pag maganda yung implementing rules and regulations, baka hindi muna. With regards to the IRR, mas matagal yung isasa-batas mo. Pero kung may IRR na mas madali.“

The House Committee on Dangerous Drugs, meanwhile, held a hearing Tuesday on the proposal to legalize medical marijuana.

Committee Chairman Vicente Belmonte told ABS-CBN News in a phone interview that the hearing was called to understand certain issues, and that the DOH backed the proposal to legalize marijuana for medical purposes.

But personally, Belmonte believes the medicinal purposes of marijuana can already be served by other medicines currently in the market.