South Africa

Fri
23
Oct

The street drug wreaking havoc in South African townships

Simunye (South Africa) (AFP) - More than two decades after the end of apartheid, South Africa's youth hoped to be reaping the benefits of the country's fresh start, but a potent drug is taking a heavy toll on the most vulnerable.

 

Like all mothers, Caroline had big dreams for her eldest son, naming him Tshepo for hope.

"He was my hope," she said, choking back tears. "But now I don't know."

For three years, 19-year-old Tshepo has been hooked on nyaope, a drug that is smoked like a rolled joint.

Wed
21
Oct

Dagga in Zanele’s room, says Minister Moyo

THERE was a small amount of marijuana in Zanele Moyo’s room and not the huge cache of empty alcohol bottles initially indicated, higher education minister Jonathan Moyo said on Wednesday.

Zanele, Minister Moyo’s daughter, was found dead in her off-campus flat in South Africa last Saturday. The 20-year-old was a second year student at the University of Cape Town.

Her body arrived in Harare Wednesday ahead of burial at Glen Forest on Friday.

Addressing mourners who included President Robert Mugabe, Minister Moyo said they found a small amount of marijuana when they got into Zanele’s apartment.

According to The Herald newspaper, Minister Moyo said the family had not raised any suspicion of foul play over his daughter’s passing.

Tue
20
Oct

A missed chance to weed out cannabis myths

Hazel Crampton does well to outline the colonial mythmaking around marijuana but her book, Dagga: A Short History, still comes across as incomplete.

In a talk at the international conference on law and religion in Africa, held at Stellenbosch University last year, emeritus justice Albie Sachs touched on a momentous 2002 Constitutional Court case involving the religious use of dagga.

Rasta lawyer Gareth Anver Prince had challenged the constitutional validity of the prohibition on using or possessing dagga for religious purposes and was now facing Constitutional Court judges, including Sachs.

“I don’t know why I felt so much for Anver Prince [and his fellow Rastafarians]; they were standing at the back of the court with their dreadlocks, kind of uncomfortable.

Fri
16
Oct

Legalisation of marijuana in South Africa

The legalisation of marijuana in South Africa as of late has been a controversial topic. Around the world many countries are slowly becoming more accustomed to the idea of marijuana as a non-harmful substance and it is high time policy in South Africa embraces it and ease the laws against the possession and consumption of marijuana. “Cannabis is to date a genetically pure plant, occurring globally, which offers massive medicinal, industrial, agricultural, ecological, and socio-economic benefits to the man on the street.” (George, 2015) In 2010 the UN World Drug Report states that between 119 million people to 224 million people above the age of 18 used marijuana. (UN, 2010)

Tue
13
Oct

African nations consider legalized marijuana

The cultivation and use of marijuana is rapidly rising across Africa as farmers, hit by low commodity prices, increasingly see the drug as a cash crop.

Pressure for legalizing marijuana is increasing in many African countries as legalized pot in the U.S. and Uruguay leads the way.

“At the moment, farmers choose to cultivate marijuana over traditional crops because it commands a far higher market price on the black market both at home and abroad,” Zambian Green Party President Peter Sinkamba told Anadolu Agency.

Sat
10
Oct

SA’s cannabis oil ‘Robin Hood’

Durban - The man dubbed “the Robin Hood of cannabis oil” is waiting to hear whether he faces prosecution after a Hawks raid on his operation in Richards Bay, while Parliament continues to look into the issue of legalising the narcotic weed for medicinal purposes.

Police spokesman Brigadier Vish Naidoo said certain explanations a man raised in his defence after a drug raid a week ago in the port town still needed verification.

“He was not charged. An investigation needs to be finalised,” he said, without confirming whether the person in question was Sheldon Cramer, whose Bobby Greenhash Foundation provides the oil to cancer sufferers and other patients free of charge.

People who use his oil phoned in on Friday singing its praises.

Wed
07
Oct

Mom in court over boy’s dagga expulsion

Durban - The mother of a Grade 8 Ballito schoolboy who was expelled after testing positive for dagga, has launched an urgent high court application challenging the school’s authority to randomly test pupils using shop-bought urine sampling kits.

But while the mother – who works in the legal profession – insists the school’s conduct was “unconstitutional and unlawful” and that her son must be reinstated, the school says its zero-tolerance drug policy is crucial because the upmarket suburb is the “crucible for drug taking and dealing on the North Coast”.

Tue
06
Oct

South Africa: The great dagga debate

Increasing numbers of American states and other countries are liberalising their stance on dagga.

In May, the Medical Innovation Bill came before the South African parliamentary portfolio committee on health, in consultation with the Medical Research Council. The Bill is intended to make provision for the use of cannabinoids in medical treatment.

It is a topical issue author Hazel Crampton decided to research further, linking dagga all the way back to the 19th century and beyond. According to her findings, dagga was used freely in South Africa for hundreds of years. It was used in

Mon
05
Oct

Avoid dagga, booze, politics, king tells son

With the prospect of jail time hanging over his head, AbaThembu king Buyelekhaya Dalindyebo had some sober advice for his 23-year-old son and heir, Azenathi Zanelizwe.

"Do not smoke dagga, don't abuse alcohol - and politics are not for royals," the king advised.

In an interview in the presence of his son, he urged his scion to hold fast to the church and focus his energies on empowering himself through education "to develop our nation".

The controversial 50-year-old king's prospects of remaining a free man hang by a thread. He was sentenced to 12 years in prison by the Supreme Court of Appeal last week.

Mon
05
Oct

Ex-cop bust for making 'miracle' cannabis oil in Richards Bay

A former policeman has been arrested for manufacturing cannabis oil.

Interest in the product is growing due to a belief by some that cannabis oil can be used as an alternative treatment or pain relief for cancer‚ and even other illnesses such as Alzheimer's‚ epilepsy and Lyme disease. The late IFP MP Mario Oriano-Ambrosini‚ who had campaigned for the legalisation of medical marijuana‚ had admitted to using cannabis oil to treat his late-stage lung cancer.

The former police officer was allegedly running a sophisticated hydroponic Tetrahydrocannabinol drug lab in Richards Bay‚ KwaZulu-Natal‚ to manufacture the cannabis oil.

“This drug is reportedly worth about one thousand rand a gram overseas‚” the South African Police Service (SAPS) said in a statement.

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