South Africa


South African Marijuana Legalization May Become Medical-Only

By Russ Belville

Last year, a member of the South African Parliament named Mario Oriani-Ambrosini proposed the Medical Innovation Bill. This law would legalize the commercial, industrial, and medical applications of dagga, the local term for cannabis. Mr. Oriani-Ambrosini died of cancer, but his bill lives on in the Parliament’s Health Committee, where members of the INKATHA Freedom Party are asking that the commercial and industrial regulations be deleted so the bill focuses only on medical marijuana.

The INKATHA Freedom Party is a minor party that collected just 2.4 percent of the vote in the 2014 elections, holding just ten of the 400 seats in a Parliament governed by the African National Congress with 249 seats.


South Africa: Weed out commercial use of dagga, says IFP

INKATHA Freedom Party (IFP) wants Parliament’s health committee to scrap the Medical Innovation Bill’s proposals to legalise the commercial use of marijuana and focus the bill solely on its medical applications, it has emerged.

It is a private member’s bill, and was the brainchild of late IFP MP Mario Oriani-Ambrosini, who died of cancer last year.

It proposes legalising dagga for medical, commercial and industrial purposes, and says that a medical practitioner working at a pilot health centre should be allowed to administer unproven treatments without fear of litigation.

IFP MP Narend Singh said on Wednesday the bill should focus solely on the medical use of marijuana.


Extent of airport crime exposed

Drug couriers with a special taste for cocaine powder‚ fake documents‚ smuggling and rental car theft are amongst the crimes being fought by joint security forces at the OR Tambo International Airport in Johannesburg.

The South African Police Service says it requires a multi-skilled team to repel the syndicates and criminal suspects from transiting through the airport‚ explaining in a statement: “The types of crimes and challenges they are faced with requires certain specialities from the various role-players”.

“They encounter suspects‚ syndicates and crime from all over the world‚” also requiring the team to liaise closely with Interpol and regional police chiefs.


South African Teen Use of Dagga Grows

Dagga in South Africa use is common, but it certainly isn’t meant for children, with research showing ill effects on developing brains. Yet, it seems that many teens get high at school and some even make money selling dagga cookies. Video: eNCA


JOHANNESBURG - The Department of Education has a policy stating that should a child be expelled, they should be kept in that school until alternative placement is found for them. That was not the case for 15-year-old Linda Ramatlou (not his real name) and 18-year-old Karabo Mphathi of Springs Boys’ High School.


Results From PatientsLikeMe Survey Highlight Patient Beliefs About Medical Marijuana

A new survey of 219 PatientsLikeMe members has found that patients with certain conditions who use medical marijuana believe it is the best available treatment for them, with fewer side effects than other options and few risks. The survey, conducted in June 2015, is among the first to gauge patient perceptions about the benefits and risks of medical marijuana and their level of willingness to recommend its use.


South Africa: Pupil's Expulsion for Dagga - School Takes On KZN Education Dept

Maritzburg College's resolve to expel a Grade 11 pupil, who admitted to two dagga offences, among other things, has been stifled by the KwaZulu-Natal education department.

The school says the department still has to make a decision on an appeal by the boy's father for leniency. It says the department has taken an "unreasonably long" time to decide on the matter.

The case was before the KwaZulu-Natal High Court in Pietermaritzburg, which on Tuesday directed the MEC for education to decide on the appeal lodged by the father.

The school argued that the MEC's delay of nearly three months is "unreasonably long".


Can South Africa Can-can for Cannabis

Before I can address the negatives or benefits of cannabis, we all first have to take a look at the current state our country and Government is in.

There are so many problems which our country is facing, which government is not quite fulfilling and majority of our people is not acting as the best sidekicks to take on these issues and making it a 50/50 partnership. From issues of poverty mainly, to corruption within our parliament house, to drugs, crime and so much which we are all familiar with, either from first hand experience or having to bare witness to a friend or stranger.

So personally these problems should firstly be improved or dealt with accordingly before we can get to legalising cannabis and enjoy it in a mature and secure environment.


Medicinal dagga: Can dangers be ignored?

There is not sufficient evidence to support the potential medicinal benefit from cannabis use cautions an academic from Stellenbosch University.

The BBC reports that Dagga is the most common illicit drug abused in South Africa and while some people argue that it holds medicinal benefits, a psychiatrist from the Stellenbosch University maintains that there is not yet enough evidence to support this.

“Although this drug is viewed as an innocent herb by many, there is increasing concern about adverse health consequences,” said Dr Lize Weich, senior psychiatrist and lecturer at Stellenbosch University.

She said there is concern about the popular belief that cannabis is “medicinal” and thus “harmless and safe”, especially among children and adolescents.


South Africa: KZN a Step Ahead of Crime

Police on Wednesday claimed their four-month Operation Fiyela had smashed a hole in organised crime in the province.

Since operations began on March 1 police had made more than 60 000 arrests, recovered more than 1 000 firearms and seized almost seven tons of marijuana.

After widespread criticism in the national media, provincial government along with the police on Wednesday announced the successes of the operation.

In a media briefing held in Pietermaritzburg, KZN Premier Senzo Mchunu, MEC for Transport, Community Safety and Liaison Willies Mchunu and provincial police commissioner Lieutenant-General Mmamonnye Ngobeni sat to discuss urgent security and policing matters in the province.


Passive about dagga

Legally regulated cannabis is a concept that is supported by many South Africans, young and old alike. The cannabis movement is one of the largest social movements on the planet and has widespread support through all classes of society, especially in South Africa.

Cannabis activism is a daunting task, especially in South Africa with its conservative background and scars from Apartheid. Our democracy has yet to mature to the point where it is able adequately protect the rights of its people. Until then activists face an uphill battle as the vanguards of a mostly impassive and unassertive movement.  


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