Conflicting arguments have been made about marijuana as the subject of its legalisation continues.
For Consultant Psychiatrist, Dr Eugene Dordoye, although there are good chemicals among the over 100 found in marijuana, the side effects are too grave to have it legalised.
Speaking on the Super Morning Show on Joy FM, Thursday, he stated many people in the country do not have much use for marijuana except smoking, hence, legalisation poses a likely possibility of overindulgence.
He told Daniel Dadzie, “some of the harmful chemicals have been found to cause psychosis [madness]. This is where they get out of touch with real life,” he said.
The psychiatrist who also doubles as a Senior Lecturer at the University of Health and Allied Sciences, explained some researches done in Europe have suggested people who smoke more potent marijuana every day are more likely to get psychosis.
“I know some people will say ‘not everybody is addicted to weed hence its legalisation would not be a problem’ but just because some people are not addicted does not mean it should be made free for all to try.”
He expressed the need to not have marijuana legalised, explaining, in a country where people mix alcohol with marijuana to draw out its potency, it will be unwise not to legalise the drug.
However, the Chairman of Hemp Association of Ghana and sports analyst, Nana Agyemang, said it’s juvenile to base the argument of weed legalisation on smoking alone.
Smoking marijuana may be associated with psychosis but there is no way weed can cause psychosis on its own, he argued.
“There is correlation and causation. People go to the hospital, but when they die will you say the hospital is killing the people? No! Same way, the smoking does not induce psychosis on it own, it can’t. It's not a single factor,” the football coach stated.
He disclosed there are 2.2 million marijuana users in Ghana -more than the number of people in Jamaica- which includes doctors, lawyers and other “sophisticated” men and women but hardly any of them walk around with dread or looking like they smoke.
Nana Agyemang urged, the argument of the legalisation be shifted from smoking to other benefits, including what the legalisation would mean to people with autism, inflammation and many others.
He explained that focusing on smoking does not add to the value of what the legalisation of marijuana seeks to achieve.
“We need to open our minds to the endless possibility that exists,” he added.
Listen to the arguments: