Sadiq Kahn’s re-election as London Mayor may be a tipping point in the legalization of cannabis in the UK. Kahn narrowly defeated his Conservative Party rival Sean Bailey in the 5 May 2021 series of UK elections. Pro-cannabis beat anti-crime in voter appeal His pro-cannabis reform campaign appears to have outweighed his opponent’s […]
CANNABIZ AFRICA SPOTLIGHT
Cannabsurdity of the First Degree!
Did you know that the ‘Trial of the Plant’, the case that led to the landmark Constitutional Court ruling decriminalizing cannabis, is still on the court rolls? The case of the “Dagga Couple”, arrested in 2010, has not yet been withdrawn by the National Prosecution Authority (NPA). (See story here)
Justice System Remains Grimly Out of Step with the Rest of SA in Cannabis Reform
Police continue their onslaught against cannabis users, particularly in townships and rural areas. This is despite the government’s intention to partially legalize cannabis later this year and try and bring illegal growers and users into the legal mainstream. (See Story here)
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Power Players takes a slightly different view this week. Our top two players this week are the South African ministers who are the biggest obstacles to their own government’s cannabis reform initiative.
Cannabiz Africa believes the following two accused should be in the dock instead of the scores of ordinary South Africans arrested for trying to make a living out of a plant that provides a service to society.
Fields of Green For All (FGFA) co-founder, Myrtle Clarke is still out on bail despite the fact that her court case was a trigger for South African cannabis reform. She deserves to be in the prosecutor’s seat instead of the dock. We can’t put it better than she herself did at the launch of the FGFA Manifesto on 20 April 2021: “Mr Lamola, we reject your Cannabis for Private Purposes Bill entirely. Every word of it. How can you assign an advocate who was on the opposing side of the courtroom in the Western Cape High Court Application (to legalize cannabis) to oversee the legislation? You got a prohibitionist to write the bill! That’s what you did Mr Lamola. Mr Cele and Mr Lamola, we will fight your ignorance, your lack of cognizance of the law, your bullying and disregard for our human rights every single day ”
What doesn’t this guy get? South Africa’s Justice Minister has displayed a dazzling combo of stupidity, ignorance and/or cynicism in getting a prohibitionist to draft the country’s new cannabis laws. It’s been revealed that the architect of the draft Cannabis for Private Purposes Bill appointed by Lamola was actually on the opposing bench that lost the Consititutional Court debate about the criminality of cannabis. As every lawyer in town has pointed out, free of charge, the Bill will never become law because it is riddled with more contradictions than the ANC’s approach to integrity. Comrade Lamola! Please listen to the people, tear up the existing draft and come up with something more evidence-based than the mockery of this dog breakfast’s bill.
The Cat in the Hat thinks cannabis is a gateway drug. Only problem is that he doesn’t understand that the gateway is an economic one that should be opened for the benefit of all South Africans. It’s his own government’s policy after all, and the NCMP envisages the decriminalization of cannabis and a contributor to the post-Covid economy. But instead of making a positive contribution to the debate, Cele is hell-bent on being a prohibitionist. It appears he’s hard of hearing unless the conversation happens to be around kick-backs on lucrative government property lease deals that could work in his favour.
South Africa News
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MBOSA says Africa must claim its own cannabis heritage. In its reaction to the National Cannabis Master Plan (NCMP) it’s put heavy emphasis on cannabis being firmly part of SA’s indigenous knowledge framework and that reform should benefit existing cannabis growers. For good measure it’s reminded us of the untold parts of South African history such as the 1956 ‘Bergville Dagga War’, which ultimately resulted in the hanging of 22 Zulu warriors who’d murdered five police officers while defending their cannabis fields. The irony is they were hanged in 1957 on 21 March, what is widely celebrated in SA now as Human Rights Day. MBOSA has called for the commemoration of these warriors – government should pay heed that voice! And to the fact that its crooked police minister Bheki Cele and his uniformed thugs as being the biggest obstacle to cannabis reform in SA. Speak truth to power!
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The CEO of MG Health has graduated from the proverbial ‘Lesotho cannabis university of hard knocks’; he’s done the hard yards with Lesotho’s licensing fiasco, labour confrontations, shareholder shuffles, and Canadian investor expectations all the while trying to launch a world class cannabis facility in the midst of Covid-19 and come in at a production cost of under US$1/gram. Well, well done, Mr Bothma, your graduation certificate has come in the form of an EU stamp of approval for MG Health’s Lesotho facility from the government of Upper Bavaria (no slouches when it comes to rules). Now he has a German platform into Europe for the range of medical cannabis products that MG has in the pipeline. More than smiles all round, AB, we feel the thrill!
Alain St Ange
Cannabis tourism may be coming to the Indian Ocean islands collectively known as the Seychelles. The country already opened the path to legalization of medicinal cannabis in February 2020, but the Covid pandemic derailed the process.
Now, in the wake of the havoc wreaked by Covid on countries that heavily relied on tourism, the Seychelles has started re-assessing what it can offer to the new world. It’s looking towards Thailand