Samoa Prime Minister Tuilaepa Dr. Sa’ilele Malielegaoi has flatly rejected a call for the government to consider legalising marijuana for medicinal purposes.
Speaking during his weekly media session, Tuilaepa said the government would never entertain the idea because they cared about the welfare of Samoans, especially innocent young children, Samoa Observer reports.
“The reason most countries ban this stuff is because of the impact it has on the lives of the general public, especially young children. This is why this stuff is illegal,” Tuilaepa said.
“It’s the same reason ‘ice’ is illegal because it has caused a lot of mental problems for young kids. There have been cases where some people who were high on this stuff only find out after they’re high that they had killed someone. And yet they couldn’t recognise that when they were high.”
Tuilaepa said he does not want anything like that to happen to Samoa.
The Prime Minister was asked for a comment on the call by senior lawyer, Unasa Iuni Sapolu, who said the legalising cannabis would help Samoa’s economy through the export of medicinal marijuana.
She also believes this will help reduce the number of inmates housed at Tafa’igata Prison.
“Furthermore it will save costs to Samoa when all those imprisoned for possession of marijuana etc. are no longer fed in jail, no longer accommodated in jail and there are no more criminal offenses relating to marijuana,” she said.
“For health reasons, those with cystic fibrosis, epilepsy, cancer, depression and other health problems can be treated with marijuana.”
She told the Samoa Observer the government is wasting money and the Court’s time on dealing with marijuana offenses.
“Stop listening to white agendas, colonized minds, it’s just a plant, legalize it and reduce government indebtedness.”