Mr. Tie Mwape, an 81 year old man, was acquitted for the offence of Trafficking in Psychotropic Substances contrary to the Narcotic Drugs and Psychotropic Substances Act No.35 of 2021. Despite being found in possession of Cannabis also known as Marijuana, the senior citizen was acquitted due to a legal technicality.
The third schedule of the said Act, provides that a product must have more than 0.3 percent of tetrahydrocannabinol, the active ingredient in Cannabis, to be deemed a psychotropic substance. Due to the qualitative and not quantitative testing methods currently available, the percentage of the tetrahydrocannabinol in the cannabis found on Mr. Mwape could not be presented to the court, resulting in the acquittal.