Law easing prohibition on kratom tipped for June

Law easing prohibition on kratom tipped for June

Legal amendments to ease the prohibition on kratom leaves are likely to be wrapped up by June, according to a sub-committee studying the issue.

Thepthai Senpong, chairman of the sub-committee tasked with solving problems related to the plant, said yesterday that the Narcotics Control Board has provided information on amendments needed to relax the ban.

These amendments will be put up for concerned agencies to consider before they are handed to the cabinet for deliberation. After that, the amendments will be forwarded to the House of Representatives.

Mr Thepthai said the legislative process is likely to be completed by June.

A public hearing on the amendments was conducted via specific locations and through online channels on Jan 17.

Of the respondents, 95% said they agreed with easing the prohibition on kratom, while 5% disagreed.

Those opposing the change said they were afraid that relaxed laws would allow the production of the illicit kratom-based cocktail known as "4x100". The plant is also a key ingredient of a specially formulated illegal "cough syrup".

Mr Thepthai said similar hearings will be held for other stakeholders such as people who consume kratom as a herb. He added that the panel will also ask national police chief Pol Gen Chakthip Chaijinda to stop his force from arresting people who possess no more than 20 kratom leaves for personal consumption.

The panel has also invited representatives of the Royal Thai Police to provide information on the procedures used to arrest people who allegedly break the law governing the use of kratom.

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