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ICCI Hosts Three Medical Cannabis Events in South Africa for SADC Region

Seminars to Address Adherence to United Nation Treaties, Localized Treatments, and Export Capabilities Top Concerns

The International Cannabis and Cannabinoid Institute (ICCI) is hosting a series of events for medical professionals, Southern Africa Development Community (SADC) regulators, and the future medical cannabis industry. Following a series of requests for support and guidance, ICCI will be bringing global experts to Johannesburg to address concerns of policymakers and is opening up time with experts for medical professionals and those hoping to enter the medical cannabis industry in the region.

Located in the heart of Europe - Czech Republic, ICCI identifies, coordinates and supports global research priorities for the advancement of cannabis and cannabinoid treatments. ICCI is a Center of Excellence, a network of Universities, hi-tech companies, and institutions from around the globe that serve as an international research and educational hub designed to meet the needs of cannabis stakeholders globally. This mandate has turned ICCI’s resources to organizing the upcoming seminars that will include speakers/advisors representing expertise from clinicians, International Narcotics Control Board (INCB), drug development, patient advocacy, United Nations Committee on Narcotics Drugs (UNCND), and authoring and passing legislation globally.

Lesotho as a first country in 2017 licensed companies to produce medical cannabis on its land. Since then more than a half of SADC countries consider or took steps towards the production of medical cannabis and following medical cannabis program for their patients. Booming global demand for new territories creates a great opportunity for African countries to cover the needs of the local population while helping countries economy.

Event Details:


(speaker bios below)


What: “Endocannabinoid system modulations enabled by Medical Cannabis in new treatment methods accessible for local populations“  Seminars by Steph Sherer, Dr. Ethan Russo and Dr. Pavel

Who: Medical Professionals, Researchers, and Academics

When: Monday, November 26, 2018, 12:30-16:30 

Where: Crown Plaza Rosebank, Johannesburg

(Free of charge for medical professionals, patients, and academics, 750 ZAR for general admission)


What: “Moving medical cannabis laws and regulations forward in Africa” Seminars by Steph Sherer, Dr. Pavel Kubu, Dr. Ethan Russo, Tomas Sadilek, and Dr. Pavel Pachta

Who: Governmental and Ministry Personnel whose work is related to medical cannabis programs and its implementation in the Southern African Development Community (SADC) countries

When: Tuesday-Wednesday November 27-28, 2018

(Not open to public or press)


What: “Moving Medical Cannabis Industry forward in Africa and globally” Seminars by Steph Sherer, Dr. Ethan Russo, Tomas Sadilek, and Dr. Pavel Pachta

Who: Medical Cannabis Industry and Entrepreneurs

When: Thursday, November 29, 2018, 9:30 am-4:00 pm

Where: Crown Plaza Rosebank, Johannesburg

Sponsored by Webber

(Open to public 2800 ZAR)


For press inquiries contact: Jakub Vercerka -


Speakers quotes and bios:

Steph Sherer- “Properly designed medical cannabis programs give patients and their medical providers more options for essential treatments. I am encouraged by the number of countries that are interested in creating programs that will serve the local populations”

Steph Sherer is a founder and President of Americans for Safe Access (ASA), founding member of International Medical Cannabis Patients Coalition (IMCPC). She has become the foremost international leader and expert on medical cannabis patient advocacy and, alongside the American Herbal Products Association (AHPA) Steph has created the first industry standards in the areas of Distribution, Cultivation, Analytics, and Manufacturing, Packaging, and Labeling.

Ethan Russo, MD - “We are extremely pleased to have the opportunity to liaise with medical colleagues in southern Africa and discuss the myriad possibilities for cannabis therapeutics on the continent. We are also excited to explore the biochemical profiles of African cannabis landraces, particularly their content of tetrahydrocannabivarin (THCV), a cannabinoid with great promise in treating Type II diabetes, metabolic syndrome, neuropathic pain and epilepsy.”

Ethan Russo, MD, is a Director of Research and Development of ICCI, board-certified neurologist, psychopharmacology researcher, and former Senior Medical Advisor to GW Pharmaceuticals. He served as study physician to GW Pharmaceutical for three Phase III clinical trials of Sativex, physician and medical monitor for early studies of Epidiolex. He graduated from the University of Pennsylvania (Psychology) and the University of Massachusetts Medical School, before residencies in Pediatrics in Phoenix, Arizona and in Child and Adult Neurology at the University of Washington in Seattle. He was a clinical neurologist in Missoula, Montana for 20 years in a practice with a strong chronic pain component.

Pavel Kubu, MD-“It is our pleasure to collaborate with forward thinking partners like Webber, who is already investing in education and improving quality management in the cannabis industry and safety of patients.”

Pavel is CEO of International Cannabis and Cannabinoids Institute Specialties include medical informatics, digital healthcare, digital transformation of public services, national strategies and planning, and government affairs. Prior to ICCI, Pavel worked at Intel in the Healthcare/Education division as a Business Development Manager driving innovative usage models and collaborating with governments on proof of concepts.

Dr. Pavel Pachta - “Medical Cannabis could have a great impact on the quality of life of many SADC citizens as well as create much-needed revenue streams. However, the success of the programs will rely on the legal framework at the heart of programs to ensure that they can be rolled out without stepping outside the UN Treaties and the respective government obligations. I am excited to have the opportunity to share my insights to help the governments and industry move their programs forward.”   

Dr. Pavel Pachta is ICCI’s International Regulatory Affairs Director.  As former Deputy Secretary of the International Narcotics Control Board and former Chief of the Narcotics Control and Estimates Section at UNODC he offers a unique perspective on medical cannabis laws and regulations. Dr. Pachta has been a frequent contributor on UN and WHO publications.

Tomas Sadilek- “I am excited to see the interest into this essential medicine. From our experience in all parts of the world, we know that it is important to be prepared for upcoming change from the perspective of patients, medical doctors, governments and industry. I believe that this event will bring needed clarification for all parties to move the medical cannabis program in the SADC region forward.”

Tomas Sadilek joined the ICCI in the position of Director of Government Affairs. He brings with him extensive experience from the Office of the Government of the Czech Republic in the field of Legal and Illegal Drugs Represented the Czech Republic in all drug-related meetings in United Nations institutions (Vienna, New York), Council of the EU meetings and Council of Europe meetings. Represented the Czech Republic in meetings in EU area, Eastern Partnership countries area, occasionally the US.


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