Hassan Nahon accuses GSD of u-turn

Later yesterday, Opposition MP Marlene Hassan Nahon issued the following:

Following the UK announcement that rules will be relaxed on medicinal cannabis products, I reiterate my call to Government to take serious action on making derivatives of the plant available for medicinal use here in Gibraltar also, for the benefit of our suffering patients. 

I am pleasantly surprised if not a little perplexed to read the GSD’s official statement yesterday on this issue in light of my campaign for the last two years where I have been the lone political voice and where my position has been mocked and criticised by the GSD. This was especially the case during my motion to Parliament where I called on Government to change the rules.

The GSD’s u-turn is welcome, despite the late stage in the debate and once, as usual, others have led on it.

Nevertheless, the GSD’s position is still highly contradictory because they have always been against the provision of unlicensed cannabis products -something they made clear in Parliament- and this guidance from the UK, once the safeguards have been absorbed, allows medical professionals to issue totally unlicensed products.

I therefore think they would do well to re-read the new guidelines and ensure their new campaign is consistent with their party’s position on this matter in order to avoid confusing the public any further.

At the motion I tabled and debate we had in Parliament, where both the GSD and GSLP shot down my motion calling for a change in the law, the Government did stand by a nuanced position in connection with patient safety, implying a solution could be reached once this was achieved. Now that the guidance has been issued, I call on Government to urgently review the position so that guidelines can be modified, bringing in the necessary legislative changes, and check and balances for our local circumstances.

Every day that passes, is another day that many of our local patients in extreme pain could benefit from medicinal cannabis. I therefore urge the Health Ministry to address this issue as a matter of priority.