TD 'outraged' health committee has thrown out medicinal cannabis bill

The TD behind moves to legalise medicinal cannabis has said he will force a Dáil vote to stop his bill from being abandoned.

It comes after the Oireachtas Health Committee threw out the bill from People Before Profit's Gino Kenny, because it has too many legal flaws.

According to the committee report released today, the bill poses “major legal issues, unintended policy consequences and a lack of safeguards against harmful use of cannabis by patients.”

It also warns that the bill could pave the way for all cannabis to be legalised, something denied by the Dublin Mid-West TD.

He said he is determined to make sure his bill does not just fall by the wayside.

Mr Kenny said: "Ultimately it's up to the Dáil to make the decision on this document and that will probably be some time in September.

"So it's not dead by any means. We're up against it in some ways, but that decision has to be done by the Dáil itself."

He also said he is “outraged” at the decision, adding that it is “totally unacceptable” that the first he heard of it was on Newstalk today.

"It shows a huge amount of disrespect from the committee and from Kate O’Connell that the findings of their report should be leaked on national radio like this," he said.

He warned that the legislation was never aimed at the full legalisation of cannabis – and took issue with the timing of the report’s release.

“There was pre-legislative scrutiny,” he said. “That finished in April and since then I have been asking the Health Committee can they produce the report.”

“Now they produce it two days before the Dáil finishes – and that is deliberate, that is really deliberate.”

The bill originally passed the Dáil in December – but has been stalled at the Health Committee ever since.

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