IT IS SELDOM WE SEE A REPRESENTATIVE FROM CONGRESS manifesting utmost dedication and perseverance in advancing an advocacy as we see in Representative Rodolfo Albano III in the shepherding of his Bill — the “Philippine Compassionate Medical Cannabis Act.” Not a minute later than the first day of the 17th Congress, Representative Albano re-filed his Bill accompanied by members of the Philippine Cannabis Compassion Society (PCCS), medical patients, parents of children with cancer and epilepsy, and advocates and volunteers in support of said bill. This Congressional Bill, authored by Albano, seeks to legalize the use of marijuana as a cure for several ailments such as Epilepsy, Cervical Dystonia, Anorexia, Multiple Sclerosis and other serious debilitating diseases including the easing of pain in cancer. Cannabis or Marijuana is presently legal for medical use in many countries around the world and in more than half of the 50 States, and counting, across the USA including Washington DC. Veteran Congressman Albano hopes to have the bill passed into law by this current Congress, while President Duterte has expressed support for the bill; the Catholic Church and other religious organizations have likewise voiced their endorsement of the bill. We see no reason for it not to be passed notwithstanding a few more stubborn and ignorant legislators and their ilk whom we hope would be less hysterical, and more enlightened on the scientific findings of the plant’s healing properties, as well as have more compassion for the thousands suffering from one or the other aforementioned diseases.
The continued procrastination and obstructionism by some members of Congress in passing this bill is unconscionable and downright cruel. It makes the sufferings of those in need of this cure doubly painful not to have supervised access to the plant when most of the world’s scientists have already acknowledged and confirmed its medicinal value. It would help if we all be pro-active in support of the Congressman from Isabela in assuring that the 17th Congress do not waste anymore precious time in alleviating unnecessary suffering by legalizing the medical use of this plant, a plant, for crying out loud, that Filipino indigenous groups used hundreds of years ago to cure their ailments. In addition, we hope Congressman Rodito Albano’s Bill is passed into law soonest so we, as a nation, can also prove to ourselves and show the world that we are a progressive, sensible, compassionate, and caring people. And most importantly, so it can, indeed, begin to help the sick among us — relative, friend, countrymen — and relieve them of their suffering ASAP and not a minute later.