Pubdate: Tue, 07 May 2013
Source: Times, The (South Africa)
Copyright: 2013 AVUSA, Inc.
Author: Nashira Davids


COME election time next year, Jeremy Acton, leader of the Dagga 
Party, hopes to have his face printed on ballot papers along with 
those of the political bigwigs.

Acton is working flat out to ensure that his party garners the 500 
signatures required to contest the poll nationally. Currently he is 
200 names short and does not have a cent in the kitty.

Acton started the party after "listening to the herb". His conscience 
told him to speak up about the "lies" perpetuated about the plant.

Acton, who has a degree in building arts from the Nelson Mandela 
Metropolitan University, said he was introduced to the herb at the age of 23.

"I smoked my first joint when I was doing military service. I use it 
as part of my meditation. I am not a Christian but I have great 
respect for the Creator and the creations."

Acton said there is great potential for his party because 35% of 
South Africans over the age of 13 smoke dagga.

In addition to having the plant legalised, he wants to unlock its 
economic potential.

"Cannabis is an industrial crop, with multiple benefits. Our farmers 
are battling with conventional crops. Cannabis grows the most biomass 
with the least water of all agricultural crops."

He said dagga is safer than tobacco and alcohol.
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