BIM promises to decriminalize weed

Leader of the fledgling Barbados Integrity Movement (BIM) Neil Holder is promising to decriminalize marijuana if his party wins the next general election, constitutionally due next year.

During an interview with Barbados TODAY, Holder expressed concern that too many young people were being incarcerated for having “a spliff or two”, and that both families and Government were paying dearly as a result of the jailing of men in particular.

“We have scenarios today where the girlfriends, wives or better halves find themselves in a situation where there is no breadwinner. The girlfriends are then forced to go to the Welfare Department to be maintained,” Holder said, while estimating that it costs Government approximately $2,600 a month to maintain every prisoner.

Neil Holder

Holder also pointed out that more developed countries, including Jamaica, had already seen the wisdom of decriminalizing marijuana and were using it to their economic advantage.

He also pointed out that many countries were taking advantage of the medicinal benefits of the drug, which remains illegal here.

“Certainly we can go in that direction. I do not see any objection to doing that in Barbados. We should be able to turn what is now taboo into something useful for our society,” Holder said, adding that “most of these people who are being incarcerated are young people who do not understand the value of their lives and reputations”.

The recently announced political grouping, which is yet to roll out its slate of candidates, said it was in the process of putting together its manifesto which will spell out its position on other issues currently before the country. 

29 Responses to BIM promises to decriminalize weed

  1. Ras Unjay
    Ras Unjay March 11, 2017 at 12:18 am


    • Peter March 11, 2017 at 10:29 am

      This will be supported by all Ganja users and smugglers. I want Neil Holder to show us his slate of candidates, How well prepared and trusted they are, Tell us more of his personal life. Is he a former police constable become Insurance salesman, become political party chairman. Does he have a family? any children? We know and he knows he cannot win anything. Publish your list. You can’t because no one who knows you trusts you.

  2. Tracy Brown
    Tracy Brown March 11, 2017 at 12:22 am

    NUH SOUND BAD AT All Seasons Resort Europa

  3. John Wick
    John Wick March 11, 2017 at 12:47 am

    Remember that elections is near and all of a sudden this is being said

  4. Kris Lorde
    Kris Lorde March 11, 2017 at 1:21 am


  5. Sabrina Brathwaite
    Sabrina Brathwaite March 11, 2017 at 1:36 am
  6. Angus Benn
    Angus Benn March 11, 2017 at 4:33 am

    Sound good. Good thinking. The DLP would never legalized marijuana for medical uses. This government remind me of the old ages . They doing things like we still in slavery. Most of these people sucking the blood from poor people. Most of these lawyers don’t want marijuana to legalized nor criminalize.

  7. Keith Forde
    Keith Forde March 11, 2017 at 4:47 am


  8. lynne leader March 11, 2017 at 4:57 am

    I have just returned from Barbados and as there is not a lot of money around adults and youths all smoke the Bajan weed.My partner too has grown up with this as his parents did no problems educated sincere and works.I think it would help the economy and ease the crime rate if they do legalise .You dont need an election to make this obvious decision

  9. L King March 11, 2017 at 7:16 am

    This herb is a drug – it HAS been proven to cause mental health issues of the most dangerous type. And it will open the floodgates of the drug cartels from South America.

    You people on here agreeing to it don’t even realise what the bible says about ANYONE involved in it – and what WILL happen to them for it is sorcery the twin sister to witchcraft. That’s why people that engage in it go ‘strange’ during and after taking not only this substance but others as well. This ‘strangeness’ is not the person but the demons manifesting

    In any case this party WON’T win.

    • Mundo March 11, 2017 at 7:53 am

      L King it’s God’s plant so Don t talk foolishness. A herb is rite…its all it is

  10. Watchful Warrior March 11, 2017 at 7:58 am

    Cannabis use to be used as a prewar cash cropnfor many nations.
    ..the bark was used to make ropes and clothing…Hemp rope…Hemp material.
    ..The seeds are full of protein …Hemp seeds sold locally byhe-way in health foods shops…
    …If you are going to legalized it then ..Put a cap on the amount to be grow per acre… Let the unemployed youth work the farms ..Teach the proper !methods in growing
    …Use it medically…Develop a medical field for its proper uses…The medical uses of cannabis are so vast that research is now stretching the surface..
    …Use it cosmetically… There are emerging markets for cosmetic cannabis
    …Use it in the food industry…the protein content of hemp seeds are superior..
    Only small minds would think legalisation means smoking….

  11. Donild Trimp March 11, 2017 at 9:57 am

    This gentleman is off and running.

    Good move. That is what I call identifying with an issue and running with it.

    This is a positive first step for a political party.

    Keep up the good work.

  12. Mack March 11, 2017 at 10:06 am

    We can see where the priorities of this party is. The econamie is in a hand basket, the down grades are piling up and these guys biggest concern is legalizing weed. ????? VERY BRIGHT!!!

  13. Alex Alleyne March 11, 2017 at 11:16 am

    Check out the “mad houses” the court house for the increase of theft . the destruction of young males and females with rise in prostitution , etc. You guys think you will running a BANANA REPUBLIC.

  14. Redlion March 11, 2017 at 11:56 am

    imagine tourist coming to an island where you can openly smoke ganja , two fresh things the economy got there to depend on

  15. Sheron Inniss March 11, 2017 at 1:28 pm

    Is he for real? I was just looking through an old magazine and there was an article about who was putting the bucks behind decriminalizing weed. Billionaires who do not use or encourage their own to use it but have $$$ in their eyes. You would be shocked to know how long this debate was going on in the USA before it was implemented.

  16. Peter March 11, 2017 at 2:56 pm

    Was this the entire content of the press conference, or just the most sensational bit, to sell papers? Does the BIM really have a single plank platform, or were other idea presented that didn’t make your cut?

  17. Sherlock Holmes. March 11, 2017 at 3:02 pm

    Listen Mr Holder i am one for new blood but you see these donkey alerts you are engaging in to garner support they will not go down well with me.Please bring some meaningful discussions to the table , marijuana is alright just where it is on the books as a criminal offence for it’s possession. I do not buy into this decriminalization nonsense it will never work. Focus your attention on the serious issues. They are just as many of us out here that have absolutely no interest in marijuana we want solutions not gimmicks that may appease to some of the young and reckless.You are starting wrong on this premise and i suggest you stop and take stock and reboot or you will surely get the boot.

  18. Donild Trimp March 11, 2017 at 3:13 pm

    @Sherlock Holmes:
    Mr Sherlock Holmes, this is the first party (other than the ruling DLP party} that brought an issue to the table.

    Can you name anything the other parties have so far identified with that would indicate to you a change of Gov’t is the way to go?

    Just name one. I am waiting.

    • Sherlock Holmes. March 11, 2017 at 4:21 pm

      Trimp please note i am not bashing the party just this stance on marijuana to me it is a non issue!

  19. Kammie Holder March 11, 2017 at 4:39 pm

    It seems Bajans commentators either don’t read or research issues before commenting. Marijuana decriminalizion is enevitable. The major prohibator of marijuana the USA also holds major medicinal marijuana patents. What is the number of road deaths and gun related murder caused by alcohol and marijuana?

    Ask cancer and epileptic sufferers or their families if any of their request for medical marijuana prescriptions were approved by MOH? Why must Bajans spend as much as $60 for a Marinol tablet?

    All criminal convictions for marijuana possessions where amounts were less than 2 ounces should be expunge.

    We need a Cannaceutical industry to extract marijuana components like CBD and THC just as the Israelis have done.

  20. JM March 11, 2017 at 6:22 pm

    The silly season has officially started .

  21. Neil Holder March 11, 2017 at 11:30 pm

    From the general direction of the dialogue, I am to assume that many contributors are spurned by partisan political emotionalism and not by solid research.

    “HEMP” the plant is not “MARIJUANA” while it does bear similar resemblance. Barbados has hundred of acres of idle lands on zone 1 areas that cannot be used for the purposes of agriculture. This land can be used alternatively for the cultivation of Hemp which requires no herbicides or pesticides and secondly solar farming. Furthermore the hemp plant is known to be a natural nutrient to the earth in that it will require no pre or post treatment of the land and can be a viable substitute for crops that will require the land to rest for the preparation of the next season.

    Hemp takes as little as 3 months to maturity and can be harvested with little intervention. The byproducts apart from medicinal use contribute as wide as even the construction industry. We can even look at the exportation of clothing materials as a raw material product similarly to “Sea Island Cotton” or we can assist some of our local garment manufacturers in producing specialty items for industries throughout the Caricom.

    It’s time for us to stop being myopic and take a careful look at how we can retool our economy or is it still preferable to sell sugar in its raw state at a loss so as to say that we have earned some foreign exchange. Marijuana on the other hand takes a drastic chunk of money out of our budget annually to police a populace for the carriage and use of cigarettes in their pockets thereby taking up the resources of our Police Force which can be otherwise deployed fighting crimes and masking the country a safe place for both Barbadians and tourist alike. Why must we be the society that waits until something is declared good elsewhere before we can embrace it as our very own development.

    As “Bob Marley” so ably says “Emancipate yourselves from mental slavery” let us move on with the country on our minds and partisan politics will eventually find its place. Neil Holder

  22. Igrunt Barbie March 12, 2017 at 9:45 am

    Bajans cry out and the only change they know is the Blp.. Bajans are afraid of the unknown…. All politicians have a particular trait…. I do not care what they do too much in their personal lives unless it involves dipping their grimey hands in the coffers… No man or women is without sin…. My only interest id to get this engine running smoothly again… It needs a good service, including a wash down…i hold no emotion towards the politicians, the only interest should be what can i do to steer the country out of this debacle so that the masses can live decent lives…. Bajans pretend too much and many have zero money management skills because they must always keep up appearances and then complain when shit hits the fan… Anyhow the man brought a real issue to the forum… One that needs to be addressed… Saying it is fine how it is far from resolute…. Humans of all ilk are prone to error…. I wish i could pick single candidates who can put emotion and self interest aside to work together.. Then i would see real progress.. Speak it out

  23. Nut Husk March 12, 2017 at 3:55 pm

    I see persons stating they know nothing about Mr Holder, but do you ask the same of the insurance salesman who offers you a policy, or the person you buy food from or even the doctor who treats you, no you do not.

    I’ve said already that if the device I’m typing this post on, runs for my constituency I will vote for it. People ask for better, ask for change ask for someone who will have their best interest at the centre of decisions and when they get it they do not know how to handle it.

    I for one do not wish to spend another 5 years under who is there now and who was before, both have shown what they won’t do. It’s now an opportunity to have what we’ve been asking for which is new and fresh people who have not gone through the process so many times that they only come out two weeks before elections promising things which never happen and I’ve seen that too.

    P. S. Why do you think this excerpt was chosen to be highlighted, is the media objective?


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