In an unprecedented move, an Israeli company, Together Pharma has been cleared to start growing Marijuana in Uganda by the Uganda Investment Authority (UIA).
Its license was approved by UIA on March 18, 2019.
“This investment License has been issued under Section 16 of the Investment Code, 1991. The provision of the Investment Code 1991 and Guidelines and Procedures brought into effect under it shall apply,” reads the license.
According to media reports, the license shows that the company will operate in Uganda as Industrial Globus Uganda Ltd and has land to grow medical cannabis (marijuana) for export in Kasese, Busongora County North, Hima Town Council.
The company that also intends to build a marijuana oil extraction plant in Kampala indicates that its initial investment in Uganda is $5m (Shs18.7 billion).
Maj Gen Kahinda Otafiire, the minister of Justice, in a letter dated February 15, 2019 addressed to the chief operating officer of Together Pharma, wrote: “Firstly, there is no single license given to grow hemp and medical cannabis in Uganda. The law requires that the applicant gets the necessary clearance from various ministries concerned and the National Drug Authority”.
Marijuana remains a banned drug in Uganda given its destructive effects when abused although it is widely used informally as a pain killer. Globally, some states in the United States have legalised the use of marijuana in limited quantities.
According to a report on lifehack.org, a health website, medical marijuana has a number of advantages.
First, the website notes, it can be used to slow and stop cancer cells from spreading.
The American Association for Cancer Research has found that marijuana actually works to slow down tumor growth in brain, breast, and lungs considerately.
Secondly, according to the same website, THC, which is an active ingredient present in marijuana slows the progression of Alzheimer’s disease.
“THC slows the formation of amyloid plaques by blocking the enzyme in the brain that makes them. These plaques kill the brain cells, and potentially lead to Alzheimer’s disease,” notes the website.
In 2011, researchers reported that cannabis reduces pain and inflammation, and promotes sleep, which may help relieve pain and discomfort for people with rheumatoid arthritis.
Relatedly, a 2006 study in the European Journal of Gastroenterology and Hepatology discovered that 86% of patients using marijuana successfully finished their therapies, while only 29% of the non-smokers completed their treatments, maybe because marijuana helps to lessen the treatments’ side effects.
Research (done on rats, mice, and monkeys) from University of Nottingham shows that cannabis may help protect the brain from damage caused by a stroke by reducing the size of the area affected by the stroke.
Additional information from sources