If one former ganja farmer had his way, everyone in St. Vincent and the Grenadines and across the world will be waking up with a ‘Chatoyer spliff’ singing the lyrics of Jamaican artiste ‘Culture’ song: The International Herb.
Boasting that the New Democratic Party will create “jobs, jobs and more jobs” for the people of North Leeward and the country, North Leeward MP Roland ‘Patel’ Matthews has called on the electorate to support his party’s quest for political power in St. Vincent and the Grenadines.
On the eve of the 41st Anniversary of Independence which will culminate with a watershed general elections on Nov 5th, 2020, the two term MP outlined some of the projects he wish to implement to transform his constituency during the New Democratic Party manifesto launch at Petit Bordel.
However, he spent much of his 15 minutes presentation speaking on the marijuana issue.
He asked the crowd: “Which country in the Eastern Caribbean other than Jamaica produces the best marijuana? Which country other than Jamaica produces the best marijuana in the entire Eastern Caribbean? Which constituency produces the best marijuana in St. Vincent and the Grenadines?”
The MP said that he wants the future of North Leeward to be analogous to the famous line from the late Jamaican singer Culture, “I took a spliff this morning of the international herb.”
“Any way around the world you go and you get a spliff of the North Leeward special, you must be saying, I take a spliff this morning of the international herb. It doesn’t make sense that North Leeward produce the best recreational marijuana and we nah mek no money from it.”
“We will be reorganizing, reshaping, the ganja legislation that the ULP has in place that is killing the local farmers. We are going to ensure that ganja farmers will be able to do business and make good money.”
The planned reorganization of the industry according to Mr Matthews is the legalization of two ounces of marijuana while expunging the records of all persons who have been criminalized for having small quantities of the plant.
“We are going to ensure at least two ounces are used for recreational purposes so when you are on the block and you have your two ounces of weed in your hand, no police can’t lock you up because it will be legal.”
The two term MP said that he is very passionate about the issues having been an ex-ganja farmer himself in 1984 and while at UWI, “wrote a thesis entitled, the socio-economic implications of marijuana cultivation on the village of petit bordel from 1975 – 1995 because I have seen how my village of petit bordel transformed itself into one of the most productive communities in north leeward because of ganja.”
He said local shops and stores in Kingstown have benefitted from ‘ganja money’ which has also sent many children to school.