Primary Industries Budget Estimates Committee hearings today confirmed that the Liberal government’s initial claim that medicinal cannabis trials could impact on the state’s poppy industry were baseless and unfounded, said Greens Leader and Primary Industries spokesperson Kim Booth MP.
“The Minister, Jeremy Rockliff, was unable to provide any formal advice from his department which underpinned his, and other Government members’, public statements earlier this year that medicinal cannabis trials would damage the state’s lucrative poppy industry,” Mr Booth said.
“It is a perfectly reasonable assumption that independent and formal departmental advice to justify such claims would exist, but all that could be offered by the Minister is a letter from one stakeholder. This is not formal departmental advice.”
“Interestingly, Mr Rockliff did state that he personally now supports medicinal cannabis trials.”
“Clearly, the Hodgman regime dashed off and made an ideological, uninformed and knee-jerk decision when they rejected the prospect of medicinal cannabis trials.”
“This is an irresponsible way to govern. While the Greens welcome the government’s backflip on medicinal cannabis trials, this must be an end to knee-jerk, uninformed and ideologically driven decision making,” Mr Booth said.