Over 30 people who have expressed interest to grow and process industrial hemp will have to wait a little longer as the board to vet their applications has not been appointed.
The revelations come amid growing concerns from prospective players in the sector who feel there is no progress.
Speaking to Metro Online, Dr. Akimo Salipira, Acting director of the Cannabis Regulatory Authority said the authority has received 38 applications. Salipira however said the applicants will have to wait for the final nod from a yet to be appointed board.
“We are expecting to finalise all the processes when the board is in place” he said. Meanwhile, Humphreys Mvula, a commentator has described the absence of the board as detrimental to the calls to have a substitute for tobacco.
Mvula has since asked government to make the appointments quickly as the applicants are facing a delayed pressure to start processing the hemp.
Earlier this week, one of the prospective players, Mbelwa Investment Limited expressed concern that a new board has not yet been reconstituted despite the grouping started making preliminary preparations to start production of industrial hemp.