The Dangerous Drugs Board stands by their statement that cannabis (marijuana) is still a “dangerous” drug, following its reclassification by the United Nations Commission on Narcotic Drugs (CND).
DDB undersecretary Benjamin Reyes said that the UN’s decision did not mean that it was no longer dangerous.
“It’s just that marijuana (may now) have possible medical use, but still dangerous just like cocaine and opium,” he said.
He added that the CND’s reclassification is just recommendatory and not binding, and that advocates for its cultivation in the country should await Congress’ decision on the matter.
He also said that “local laws will take precedence over international conventions” and that “international convention and recommendation must be studied to know what is applicable in our own setting.”
Reyes stated that those who support medical cannabis are pushing its use for illnesses with existing medications, which are “more effective” than these substances.
He further warned travelers not to bring the product into the country, whether in medical or oil forms, as this will necessitate registration with the Food and Drug Administration.
Marijuana was recently removed by the CND off the dangerous drugs list, a decision met with criticism by the Philippine foreign affairs secretary, Teodoro Locsin Jr. and the DDB.
The decision could open it up to studies on its medicinal benefits and perhaps even prompt its legalization and recreational use in other nations. Before its reclassification, cannabis was in the same category as heroin and addictive opioids.