Endorsed by a former president and by a reigning Miss Universe, the medical marijuana bill rose from deep slumber and approved on second reading in the House of Representatives Wednesday.
House Bill No. 6517 or the Philippine Compassionate Medical Cannabis Act is expected to be passed on third and final reading next week. This will give the Senate time to pass its own version of the controversial but popularly supported legislative measure.
Former president and now Speaker Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo and Miss Universe Catriona Gray have declared publicly their support for the use of medical marijuana.
Isabela Rep. Rodito Albano, principal author of the bill, lauded his colleagues in the Lower House for passing the measure before the congressional break next month.
Co-authors Reps. Johnny Pimentel (PDP-laban, Surigao del Sur) and Tom Villarin (Akbayan Partylist) were equally relieved that the measure was revived after the previous House leadership sent it to the legislative backburner.
HB 6517 provides for the compassionate and right of access to medical cannabis. It also proposes the expansion of medical research into its medicinal properties. [Read more at Manila Bulletin]