People in Malta will be allowed to grow up to four cannabis plants, Prime Minister Robert Abela has proposed as part of a White Paper to reform the country’s weed laws.
Cannabis plants grown at home can only be cultivated in a space that isn’t visible to the public and can only be used by the people living in that residence.
One can grow up to four plants for their exclusive use, and any homegrown cannot be sold to third parties.
Cannabis users found in possession of up to 7g of weed will no longer be arrested or prosecuted, while those found in possession of between 7 and 28g won’t be subject to court proceedings but will be subject to proceedings in front of a tribunal, where they can be fined between €50 and €100.
People will be able to buy cannabis and seeds from a legal source. Abela said he’s keeping his options open in this regard and will listen to public consultation in this regard, paving the way to the potential introduction of cannabis social clubs.
In another major reform, people will be able to expunge cannabis possession-related crimes from their criminal records.
Prime Minister Robert Abela launches a public consultation process on a White Paper to strengthen the legal framework on the responsible use of cannabis.
Posted by MaltaGov on Tuesday, March 30, 2021
Meanwhile, a new government authority will be set up to oversee matters related to cannabis for personal use, and it will be tasked with commissioning studies and proposing guidelines.
“We’re a government that listens, understands, and takes decisions,” Abela said. “In recent months I was clear that it’s unacceptable for people caught smoking a joint to end up arrested, interrogated and prosecuted.”
“We already made steps forward in 2015 but reality showed us it wasn’t enough. It saddens me that some people are still being persecuted over joints, while the black market keeps finding fertile ground to operate in.”
“These proposals have their root in our electoral manifesto. Debate on this topic has been going on for a while and we now have concrete proposals to strengthen the legal framework for responsible use of cannabis.”
“Behind each proposal is a person who could have been stigmatised for smoking a joint, who ended up humiliated with their names broadcast to the country.”
Labour MP and former parliamentary secretary Rosianne Cutajar, who spearheaded this reform, said the proposals are the result of a year of work and consultation, as well as determination to create a fairer system.
“I’m proud with the proposals, because I know they come from a sense of justice, progress and responsibility,” she said while urging the public to submit their feedback over the next six weeks.