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License Process To Cultivate Cannabis In Ghana Deemed Unconstitutional

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Ghana is one of several countries on the African continent that is working towards making a meaningful impact in the emerging global cannabis industry.

In 2020 policymakers in Ghana passed the ‘Narcotic Control Commission Act’ which, among other things, created a process by which entities could obtain licenses to cultivate low-THC cannabis for industrial and medical use.

The measure was far from revolutionary, in that low-THC cannabis is already cultivated for industrial and medical use in a growing number of countries around the world. Thailand, for instance, allows any household in the country to obtain government permission to cultivate low-THC cannabis.

With that in mind, it was very defeating when Ghana’s Supreme Court recently deemed the new licensing process in Ghana to be unconstitutional. Per Ghana Web, the decision seemed to hinge on a procedural technicality.

Ghana’s Constitution was implemented in 1992 and stipulates that any measure that is passed by a committee must also go to Parliament for full debate and passage before coming into law.

It’s nuanced, but four out of seven justices apparently felt that the licensing process gave too much decision-making power to the newly formed Commission and Minister, with the three remaining justices dissenting.

It was a very close decision, decided by only one vote, and given the fact that cannabis is not going anywhere, it’s very likely that this isn’t the last chapter in this licensing saga in Ghana.