Anutin aims to clarify cannabis reform bill, not recriminalise it

PHOTO: Anutin says there's no proof of abuse of the cannabis law. (via

Critics say that the current cannabis laws have led to a raft of abuse of the plant, but Minister of Public Health Anutin Charnvirakul insists that no proof has been shown of any improper use. He fought back against the call to reclassify specific parts of the cannabis plant as an illegal narcotic.

Decriminalisation did not include a lot of caveats and has led to rushed attempts at passing further legislation to strictly regulate cannabis for medicinal purposes and not for recreational use. A petition on has garnered signatures from 1,363 doctors who caution that the lax law is leading to use by minors and other unintended usages. They ask that cannabis be recriminalised.

Anutin recently lashed out at calls to repeal the legalisation, saying there was no going backwards and questioning how Thailand would deal with all the cannabis offenders released from jail, the plantations growing the plant, and the businesses that have already been licensed and opened.

The bill aimed at tightening up the cannabis free-for-all was rejected by the House of Representatives this week, with the Democrat Party insisting that the bill was full of loopholes that would allow recreational use. Deputy Public Health Minister Satit Pitutecha is a member of the party and working under Anutin who stated that his party didn’t give a valid reason to shoot down the bill, offering his support to Anutin.

Related news

The public health minister, who also serves as deputy prime minister and is considered a strong candidate for prime minister, said the current law was specifically designed to allow for medicinal cannabis use only, and he would be happy to discuss the issues with any group opposed to the law. He believes that once the opposition’s worries are clarified, the bill will pass without any problem.

“The law doesn’t support other uses beyond [medical application]. There are rules which prevent cannabis smoking in public, and sales are restricted to individuals over the age of 20. Re-listing cannabis [as a narcotic] is ridiculous, and we won’t do it because we have come so far. We haven’t seen any negative impact that is beyond our control.”

SOURCE: Bangkok Post

  • Win a 3-night beachfront stay at Four Points by Sheraton Phuket by taking a short Thaiger Survey HERE!

Cannabis NewsThailand News

Neill Fronde

Neill is a journalist from the United States with 10+ years broadcasting experience and national news and magazine publications. He graduated with a degree in journalism and communications from the University of California and has been living in Thailand since 2014.

Related Articles