The cannabis that was recently accepted in Rwanda for medical use, was once confined for the minority group of ‘Batwa’ and was totally illegal and banned in the whole country until last year of 2020.
According to Wikipedia, a 1959–1960 study showed that cannabis use in Rwanda at the time was confined to the minority ‘Twa people’. Negative associations of cannabis with violence, and with the low social status of the ‘Twa’, resulted in its usage being confined to that ethnic group.
In 2010 the Minister of Health proposed a law to allow cannabis to be used for medical purposes in the country which was not well considered until last year when the Rwanda Development Board (RDB) showcased the importance of growing cannabis in Rwanda and the economic benefit, and then it was legalized only for medical purpose.
The policy which was passed by a cabinet meeting chaired by President Paul Kagame in October last year, will see Rwanda join a group of African countries which are already partaking in the multibillion-dollar commercial Marijuana industry.
The Government of Rwanda through the Rwanda Development Board and the National Agriculture Export Board (NAEB) is considering the development of a medical cannabis industry in Rwanda targeting medicinal and therapeutic products.
With a focus on export markets and value addition, the government seeks to participate in the economic opportunities that this growing sector offers.
Today a significant number of interested parties have subsequently and formally expressed an interest and the Government of Rwanda called upon interested parties to submit detailed business concepts.