Here’s what the PNP chief thinks of Catriona Gray’s stand on medical marijuana
MANILA, Philippines — If medical marijuana is legalized in the country, law enforcement agencies should ensure that it’s not abused, said Philippine National Police (PNP) chief Director General Oscar Albayalde on Monday.
Albayalde’s opinion on the issue surfaced as the Philippines’ bet and now Miss Universe 2018 Catriona Gray said during the question-and-answer portion of the pageant that she favors legalizing marijuana for medical but not for recreational use.
“What we have to protect here is the abuse. It’s the abuse palagi (It’s always the abuse),” Albayalde said in a press briefing on Monday, shortly after Gray bagged the crown from the prestigious pageant.
“If ever na maging batas iyan, we have to have a strict implementation of the law and palagi natin titingnan [na] baka ito ay maabuso lalo na ‘yung pagpasok niyan, ‘yung pag-import niyan,” he added.
(If we pass a law on that, we need to implement the law strictly, and we should always try to see if it could be abused, especially its entry, its importation.)
Albayalde expressed concern over the possible oversupply of marijuana in the country if it is allowed for medical use.
But despite voicing out his opinion, the PNP chief said health experts should be consulted first on the issue.
He said a hasty decision on the matter might cause a problem on law enforcement, especially as the government beefs up its war against illegal drugs.
A day after President Rodrigo Duterte joked about using marijuana to keep himself awake, Presidential Spokesperson Salvador Panelo said the President also favors legalizing medical marijuana.
House Bill 6517 or the Philippine Compassionate Medical Cannabis Act, which seeks to legalize medical marijuana in the country strictly for therapeutic purposes, is pending before the House of Representatives. /ee
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