THE passage of proposed House Bill 6517 or the Philippine Compassionate Medical Cannabis Act would only weaken President Rodrigo Duterte’s ongoing war on drugs, according to a lawmaker.
Joselito Atienza, Buhay party-list representative and senior deputy minority leader, on Tuesday warned his fellow congressmen, “… If we pass this into law, the President’s campaign will lose speed and credibility.”
Atienza was a resource person at the “Truth About Marijuana” forum held recently at the University of the Philippines-Manila.
In a statement, he reminded his colleagues not to commit the same mistake that the government made in the procurement of anti-dengue vaccines used in implementing its anti-dengue program.
“Here we go again, we failed in the dengue vaccine, which has been found to cause more harm to the school children it was administered to. If we legalize the use of medical marijuana, a lot of people could be exposed to the severe dangers of this substance, which until now has not been proven to have medicinal value. If this bill is passed, no one can guarantee against the harmful effects it will have on its users, specially the youth as forewarned by medical practitioners in the Philippines and even abroad. Let us turn down this bill while there is still time. We should reject the marijuana bill… Who will undo what we are now legalizing? Marijuana is one of the most dangerous drugs, according to the Dangerous Drugs Act, and we cannot change that by legislation,” Atienza said.
He pointed out that almost all medical associations in the Philippines and even those based abroad are vehemently against the marijuana bill.
“Ironically, it’s the politicians who are pushing for its approval…,” Atienza said.