Internet MANA to decriminalise cannabis and signal step toward regulated market



Finally some adult policy on cannabis. Internet MANA will push for decriminalisation for medicinal and recreational use, and develop policy towards a regulated market…


September 4, 2014


Internet MANA wants a complete review of New Zealand drug laws, with an immediate focus on cannabis law reform.

Both the MANA Movement and the Internet Party have developed policies through extensive membership engagement and have reached a consensus that natural cannabis use should be managed as a health issue, not a crime issue.

“It’s not easy to have a sensible discussion about cannabis at the best of times and it’s even harder in an election year,” said Internet MANA and MANA Movement leader Hone Harawira.

“But we cannot shy away from the task, given the number of arrests, convictions, and jail time for cannabis use – with ongoing discrimination resulting in Maori making up nearly 50% of convictions.”

The starting point for the MANA Movement is that cannabis is a harmful drug, along with alcohol and cigarettes.

“Decriminalisation is still being worked through by our members but our desire is to help cannabis users with the right support and treatment rather than continue with the punishment approach. Fear of conviction is stopping cannabis users from seeking help.”

Internet MANA unreservedly supports legalising the use of cannabis for medical purposes.

“There is clear evidence of the effectiveness and non-toxicity of cannabis in the management of a number of conditions,” said Mr Harawira and Internet Party leader Laila Harré.

The Internet Party has developed a comprehensive cannabis policy which includes decriminalising the possession and cultivation for personal use, with the maximum quantity to be established following a review of international evidence.

“Internet Party members have strongly supported immediate decriminalisation and want us to develop a model for the legalisation and proper regulation of cannabis,” said Ms Harré.

“There is a lot of shared thinking by the Internet MANA partners. We both start with the determination to reduce both drug harm and the harm associated with criminal processes. Our review will be mindful of the monster that alcohol has become, and the lack of responsibility and care brought by the Government that resulted in the legal highs fiasco.”

Internet MANA supported a complete review of New Zealand drug laws, said Ms Harré.

“We want that review to be based on the best available evidence and the widest possible consultation in communities all across the country. Internet MANA wants laws that focus more on helping people than penalising them and, under the current legislation, the fear of conviction actually stopping them from seeking help.”


…suddenly there is a real chance for cannabis reform. We have slipped so far behind on this debate that America, the mains sponsor for the War on Drugs is actually more progressive than us.

TDB Recommends

It’s time to stop empowering organised crime, tax the hell out of it and regulate a market for better health and societal outcomes.


  1. ..and, perhaps, a move into uses of hemp..seed,oil, and fibre..and some potential growth in these industries in areas currently suffering from current poverty..hemp is currently viewed as ‘the devils weed’ when it has so many potential benefits.

    • yes, indeed

      it can be used to make natural based plastics, fuels, cloth, rope, even building material.

      it requires little to no pesticide use

      many NZers already have the skills to grow it!

      I seriously do think that a hemp industry in the far north would solve some economic problems up there

  2. Hemp with nil thc has a myriad of uses, from fibre to food, and is one of the most versatile plants given to man (see Nandor Tancoz’s hemp suit)
    Only a totally recidivist government would continue to ban it’s growth and use. James Cameron, the film mogul, grows it on his farm. Cannabis per se can be regulated for medicinal uses and the states in USA which have done so are turning a profit from the new regulations. One has to ask the question why gambling is not only legal but encouraged whilst cannabis laws are kept in the dark ages. Internet-Mana are leading the pack with their policy.

  3. I don’t think it is a case of “finally” since the Green Party has had similar policy for many years, and more corageously has stuck with it even as it has become the third largest party in Parliament.

    • And they’ve done jack-sh*t to actually implement the policy – they don’t want to be bothered with the hassle of actually pushing this as a real issue. They are weak.

      Minor parties need to realise the power they hold over the big boys. If the Left form a coalition this election then the Greens need to MAKE themselves recognised as a serious part of the govt, and not get steamrolled by Labour. Balance of power IS power. Be strong.

      • “And they’ve done jack-sh*t to actually implement the policy – they don’t want to be bothered with the hassle of actually pushing this as a real issue. They are weak.”

        Yeah… Nah. The Greens aren’t weak, not by a long shot. They are a tough and resilient party, and could never have got where they are now if they were anything less. The problem is, until now, there hasn’t been a situation where a left leaning coalition has needed them as kingmaker. I’m a proud Labour supporter, but even when HC, who I have a lot of love for, was at the helm, she didn’t need them and made it clear. That isn’t a sign of weakness on their part – It was a sign of expediency/necessity (or lack of) on HC’s part. She’d have called on their support if she’d needed, but she didn’t.

        This election is different though. Labour almost certainly needs them (I say almost certainly because who knows what the fuck last election’s 800,000 non voters are gonna do this time, regardless of the bloody polls.) Cunliffe isn’t Clark though, and it remains to be seen how he would respond if given the chance to run a majority without Greens as support. I know that’s a long bow to draw, but this election isn’t like any other we’ve ever had.

        In the end – Instead of criticising the Greens for the decisions of others that were outside of their control, support them for the stance that they have continued to maintain in the face of over a decade of adversity. That is a sign of a party that deserves respect. My vote will still go to Labour, personally speaking, but as a Labour supporter, I would be absolutely happy to have Greens as a coalition partner, and wish them all the best.

    • Absolutely the Greens have had this policy for years and to suggest they do nothing is ridiculous, there are many many issues for them to contend with and they are a small party.

  4. I will be interested to see if they actually use this policy after the election, that is if they get seats. Too many times in the past has seen these small parties garner the cannabis vote to not say a word after the election.

    For those talking about Hemp – hemp has been legal in this country for over 10 years and the industry is alive and well.

    Fambo – the Greens have a policy, its been sitting there since their inception, yet they have never used it. again this is just a small party using cannabis voters to get into parliament, I doubt they will ever use it.

  5. Legalising cannabis has always been a no-brainer for me. I don’t think this action has EVER had a detrimental effect on any country that has gone down this road. Seriously, if any naysayers have some stats from countries that have gone down the decriminalisation route that prove/suggest they should deeply regret this action, please post some links.

  6. One way around the conservatism that has prevented progress on this issue would be to commit to reviews, and to considering the evidence of the US legalisation initiatives. It would be more mature to deal with this on the front foot – but perhaps more electorally survivable, and still acceptable, to respond to the evidence generated by more enlightened governments without needing to be quite so adventurous.

  7. Given the amount of shit that John Key can’t remember, I’m surprised he isn’t a supporter of this policy.

  8. I was pleasantly suprised to see myself appear in one political party ad, talking for a few seconds. Kind of obvious which one from my name here. I’m a paid member of Internet Mana, will be doing a strategic vote for Jacinda Ardern, and the Greens will get my party vote.
    I’ll get my special voting papers in the mail in a few days. I just have to get someone to witness me signing, them post them, with a post date of no latter than September 17th.
    I wasn’t going to vote until a few days ago, when I called them to complain about voting lasting time. Voting place was on a hill, no bus stops nearby, no seated voting booth, a flimsy carboard box to lean on. BTW If you need a seat and the staff don’t notice your stick, or other problems, you can request a seated area to be set up with a screen. I hope that disabled Kiwis overseas will also be able to vote more easily one day.
    I hope it isn’t ‘bad form’ to post who I’m voting for, as a ‘wannabe’ medical cannabis user.

  9. Bradbury I notice you haven’t posted my previous comment, you have it wrong in your post
    ‘Internet MANA will push for decriminalisation’

    Mana is not on the same page as the Internet party, its members do not yet support decriminalisation, check it out before you say these things!

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