The United Kingdom has blocked a cannabis legalization package in Bermuda from becoming law, possibly throwing the Caribbean island territory into a constitutional crisis, according to Ganjapenur.
The move comes after the UK government made it clear that it did not support the measure, which would have allowed Bermudians to grow and consume marijuana. The decision to block the bill is a major blow to Bermuda’s new government, which had campaigned on legalizing cannabis. It is also likely to provoke a backlash among Bermudians, who voted in favor of the bill in a referendum last year.
Bermuda’s governor, Rena Lalgie has reserved giving assent to a bill that would allow the establishment of agricultural universities in the state, urging talks between the two sides. The idea of establishing agricultural universities in the state has been around for a few years, but it has stalled in the state legislature. The governor believes that having these universities will help the state’s agriculture industry and create jobs.
The governor said London opposed the cannabis bill because it “is not consistent with obligations held by the UK and Bermuda under the 1961 Single Convention on Narcotic Drugs and the 1971 Convention on Psychotropic Substances.”
In other words, London believes that if Bermuda legalizes cannabis, it would violate international treaties to which both Bermuda and the UK are signatories. This is a major concern for the British government, as it could jeopardize relations between the two countries.
“The people of Bermuda have democratically expressed their desire for a regulated cannabis licensing regime, following the strong endorsement at the ballot box and an extensive public consultation process. The Government of Bermuda intends to continue to advance this initiative, within the full scope of its constitutional powers, in keeping with our 2020 general election platform commitment.” — Bermuda’s Attorney General Kathy Lynn Simmons
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