Barely two week after Police in Malawi’s central region of Nkhotakota destroyed a farm of three hectares that had Cannabis Sativa, law enforcers have in the same region but neighboring Kasungu district destroyed two and half tonnes of the illegal drug popularly known as Chamba.
While the Nkhotakota operation was done by the Police and Game Rangers, the Kasungu operation was by the Police and the Courts simply because the latest case was under the courts confinement. In Nkhotakota the drug was found in a farm in a game reserve and was destroyed in the gardens.
Part of the Kasungu consignment was confiscated from Mbiriyakula Maliko and two others at Kalenga Trading Centre in the Area of Traditional Authority Wimbe in the district.
The other was found by the Police at Chisazima and Bua roadblocks.
The owners were however not traced but Malio and his colleagues convicted and fined K50, 000 each by the Kasungu Magistrate Court.
Kasungu Police Public Relations Officer Edwin Kaunda confirmed of the development which comes at a time when Malawi President Peter Mutharika approved the cultivation of industrial hemp.
Minister of Agriculture, Irrigation and Water Development Allan Chiyembekeza said the approval is for trial purposes in the country and that the industrial hemp is not the same as much talked about and known Indian hemp.
“Let me point out that industrial hemp is different from the much talked Indian hemp chamba or Cannabis Sativa] that is prohibited. This [industrial] hemp does not contain the psychoactive chemical elements that affect people when smoked even though it is from the same family of crops,” Chiyembekeza said.
Indian hemp legalization debate took a center stage across the country and three months ago the issue was even raised in Parliament for debate, and the minister explained last month that should the trials be successful, the industrial hemp will be another source of foreign exchange earnings.