Finally, Jamaica Government has approved Ganja (Marijuana) in the amendment of the Dangerous Drugs Act to facilitate the decriminalization of it's possession of small amounts.

Jamaica's Marijuana Law Gets Major Change, Not Legal But Decriminalized - Hypelifemagazine.com

The Jamaican government has announced plans to radically reform the country’s drug laws.

Hype Life Magazine has learn that ’s legislators have approved the amendment of the Dangerous Drugs Act to facilitate the of possession of small amounts of .

Marijuana (weed, ganja) Now Legal In Jamaica?

Last year October, we announced that Jamaica’s lawmakers gave the greenlight to a private member’s motion calling for the decriminalization of ganja ().

The announcement was made by Justice Minister Mark Golding during a press conference at the Office of the Prime Minister in Kingston on June 12., 2014

Mark Golding said the cabinet was supporting a proposal to allow possession of up to two ounces (57 grams) of marijuana, known locally as “ganja.”.

Mr Golding also said marijuana would be for religious, medicinal and scientific purposes.

Jamaica's Marijuana Law Gets Major Change - Hypelifemagazine.com

Parliament to approve Marijuana Law changes by September.

“I wish to stress that the proposed changes to the law are not intended to promote or give a stamp of approval to the use of ganja for recreational purposes,” said Mr Golding.

“Cabinet has approved certain changes to the law relating to ganja. These relate to the possession of small quantities of ganja for personal use, the smoking of ganja in private places and the use of ganja for medical/medicinal purposes,” Golding said.

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He also announced that Cabinet had also approved the decriminalization of ganja for religious use and said he hoped the law would be amended by early September.

Jamaica's Marijuana Law Not Legalized, Just Decriminalized - Hypelifemagazine.com

Smoke all you want, Just dont get caught (held by police) with over two 2 ounces (57 grams) of Ganja

Bruce Golding’s announcement came on the heels of recent calls by the Opposition for individuals who are held smoking a spliff to not be given a criminal record.

With the proposed changes, people caught in possession of ganja weighing two ounces or less will not be arrested but will be ticketed and required to pay a fine. These offenders will not be brought before a criminal court or attract a criminal record.

Golding said failure to pay the fine after 30 days will result in a minor offence punishable in a Petty Sessions Court.

Golding said failure to pay the fine after 30 days will result in a minor offence punishable in a Petty Sessions Court.

The law will allow for individuals held in possession of ganja, such as an adolescent or a person deemed to be totally dependent on the herb, to be taken before the court to be evaluated and referred to the National Council for Drug Abuse for counselling.

Golding, however, warned that ganja smoking will not be permitted in public spaces.

“Smoking of ganja should be absorbed into the general non-smoking regime, with the same penalty structure, except that the smoking of ganja will be permitted in private places,” he said.

Jamaica's Marijuana Law Changes, Decriminalized - Hypelifemagazine.com

Was Marijuna decriminalized for Jamaican Rasta community?

Rastafarians have long called for the legalization of the as a sacrament. Golding said that special provisions were being made for the smoking of ganja by Rastafarians in places designated for their religious worship.

Jamaica’s First Medical Ganja Company Launched In Kingston

“We consider that Jamaica’s Parliament, as the promulgator of the Charter of Rights, is in a position to express its conviction that religious use of ganja ought not to be criminalized, given Jamaica’s history and prevailing socio-cultural environment,” he said.

Correspondents say the government plans are a major victory for Jamaica’s Rastafarian movement, which considers ganja sacred.

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In addition, the law would also be amended to allow for ganja to be grown for medical and industrial uses.

Golding also said that the State would implement changes to the Criminal Records Act to allow for the expunging of records for individuals held with small amounts of weed and have criminal convictions against their names.

“That Bill will also make consequential amendments to provide that, going forward, these minor ganja offences will not result in a criminal record,” he said. “A criminal conviction and the attendant significant adverse consequences are not justifiable for what is a relatively minor offence. A conviction currently prevents a serious impediment to the social and economic advancement of many persons, predominantly young men, who fall afoul of the law in this respect.”

The Bill is expected to come into being before Parliament takes its summer break.

Golding, however, warned that the law has not yet been amended and urged the public to respect the current legislation until the changes come into effect.

In the meanwhile, to celebrate this wonderful news about the decriminalization of Marijuana in Jamaica, keep puffing your ganja spliffs until September comes!

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