Lawmakers in Morocco held a hearing today to discuss the legalization of cannabis for both medical and recreational uses. The hearing was held by the nation’s Party for Authenticity and Modernity (PAM), which is currently in the process of drafting legislation to legalize cannabis use, cultivation and distribution. According to the United Nations, Morocco is already the top producer of hashish in the world, supplying over 42% of the word’s hash.
Advocates of the proposal say the law would be an economic boost to the nation, and would help small farmers who survive on the crop, but live at the mercy of drug lords and police attempts to eradicate their farms.
Milouda Hazib, head of the party’s parliamentary delegation, estimates that over a million Moroccans, out of a population of 32 million, make their living from its cultivation.
“Security policies aren’t solving the problem because it’s an economic and social issue so the PAM is trying to find a credible alternative,” said Mehdi Bensaid, a legislator within the party. “We think this crop can become an important economic resource for Morocco and the citizens of this region.”
The next step, Bensaid says, is to enlist other political parties as sponsors, and introduce a draft law in the next year.