Dagga still illegal in SA’ - SAPS

2018-01-18 06:01

THE legislation of marijuana in South Africa has been a topic of wide discussion last year with reports of the cultivation and use of it in regulated ways rendered permissible.

In March the Western Cape High Court passed a ruling that allowed for the possession, cultivation and private use of marijuana at home.

While the ruling had many divided on whether the legalisation of marijuana would benefit the country or not, various strides where taken to developing ways in which the plant could be used medicinally and industrially to grow the economy.

In October Fever reported that various entities, including House of Hemp and Canna Culture, would be making the cultivation of marijuana for economic growth a reality for local farmers with the backing of government under a newly formed Cannabis Developing Council of South Africa.

At the time the KZN Department of Agriculture and Rural Development spokesperson Khayelihle Nkwanana said the department was still waiting on a go ahead from parliament before implementing any projects pertaining to the cultivation of marijuana in the province.

On Monday deputy director at the Umuziwabantu/Ray Nkonyeni Dard Njabulo Ntshangase said the department had been approached by local farmers for their assistance in cultivating marijuana for commercial purposes however the policy document for this had not yet been drafted by their national office.

“Previously marijuana was known as a weed to us and not a crop. Therefore if it is to be cultivated as crop the department­ would have to develop a policy­ document for its cultivation as is the case for any other crop,” said Ntshangase.

“Also, according to our knowledge the high court ruling that passed for the legalisation of marijuana only allowed for the cultivation of marijuana at home and not for commercial use,” said Ntshangase.

Port Shepstone SAPS police spokesperson Lieutenant-Colonel Zandra Wiid said despite varying public discussions on the legalisation of marijuana the plant was

“still very much illegal” in the country.

“Any small quantity of dagga can lead to an arrest. It is also an offence to cultivate dagga. Even cannabis oil is also illegal as it contains the active ingredient THC,” said Wiid.

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