Pubdate: Sat, 12 Sep 2009
Source: Otago Daily Times (New Zealand)
Copyright: 2009 Allied Press Limited
Author: John Gibb
Cited: Otago University NORML


More than 50 people gathered at the University of Otago campus
yesterday evening to mark the fifth anniversary of weekly protests
seeking the decriminalisation of cannabis.

Some people juggled with skittles, and most listened to music played
through an extensive sound system by several disc jockeys and, later,
three live bands, outside the University Union building.

Several people also smoked cannabis in what organisers said was an act
of civil disobedience against cannabis laws.

Participants included members of Otago University NORML, a club which
advocates the decriminalisation of cannabis and is affiliated to the
Otago University Students Association.

Several police officers later walked among the protesters amid a
friendly atmosphere, and did not immediately intervene.

The so-called "4:20" protests began on the Otago campus in mid-2004
when people began gathering under a walnut tree near the union
building at 4.20pm each Friday to seek cannabis law reform, protest
organisers said.

The Friday protests had since continued each week of the university
academic year, and, from early last year, a weekly protest had also
been held at 4.20pm on Wednesdays. 
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