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After the previous chairman of the cannabis authority revealed she had been fired from her position, Leonid McKay, a former director of Caritas, will be selected to lead the organisation.

Mariella Dimech announced her dismissal in a statement early on Friday. She claimed that she had to deal with ‘no functional office, no staff, no budget and a political strategy and decision strategy I disagreed with’. 

McKay, who now serves as the Housing Authority’s chief executive, will take up her position.

Since the drug was legalised about a year ago, the Authority for the Responsible Usage of Cannabis, which oversees its use, has not granted any permits to organisations wishing to sell it. Prime Minister Robert Abela recognised the sluggish development in an interview with Times of Malta over the weekend.

Later on Friday, the appointment was made official. Government sources stated that the choice has been made ‘as the need for new leadership was felt in order for the authority to achieve the goals it was set up for’.

New rent regulations were put into effect under McKay’s leadership as the Housing Authority’s top executive. From 2014 to 2018, he served as the director of Caritas Malta and as the chairman of the Foundation for the Rehabilitation of Drug Abusers.

An individual can now grow up to four plants at home and won’t be detained for possessing up to 7 grams of cannabis for personal use, thanks to revisions made to the cannabis law.

However, the authority’s duties included running an awareness-raising campaign and regulating the industry, including the clubs.

The board announced last year also includes Nadine Brincat, Sina Bugeja, Marius Caruana, Charles Cassar, Gabriel Farrugia, Paul Micallef, and Charles Scerri as well as Janice Formosa Pace, a criminologist,

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