A widely-supported bill in the Northern Marianas aimed at putting the issue of legalising marijuana before the people in a referendum has failed to make the ballot.
Senator Sixto Igi-somar wanted to introduce the bill after the medical use of marijuana was approved in neighbouring Guam in 2014.
It was hoped that it would be able to give pain relief to people suffering from serious medical conditions such as cancer and multiple sclerosis.
Mr Igi-somar said a busy CNMI legislature was to blame for the failed bill.
He hopes to introduce a similar bill in the next legislature.