Pubdate: Sun, 08 May 2016
Source: Cape Argus (South Africa)
Copyright: 2016 Cape Argus.
Author: Asanda Sokanyile


FOUR people were arrested at the 10th annual Cannabis Walk, which saw 
thousands march in a call on the government to legalise the use of dagga.

The march began from the corner of Tennant and Keizersgracht streets 
yesterday, with excited and eager protesters singing and dancing to 
reggae music. The smell of cannabis filled the streets as marchers 
made their point. Some carried posters which read "It's very 
unnatural to make nature illegal".

March leader Johannes Berkhout said he was delighted at the turnout, 
which he said "makes it clear many are rooting for the legalisation 
of marijuana".

"It will not only benefit people's health, but it being legalised 
will also mean there will be control over its use.

"It is also less harmful than alcohol, yet alcohol is legal.

"People use it to make medicine and our aim is to save lives, and we 
are hoping to save South African lives," he said

Donita Pockpas, from Hout Bay, said she used cannabis oil to "heal 
people with arthritis".

"I use the oils to make medicine and people order it from me. I was 
taught by my mother who is Khoi San marijuana is a herb and is to be 
used as a medicine and not abused for pleasure," she said.

Khayelitsha marcher Lubabalo Mafuya said "smoking marijuana helps 
those suffering from chronic diseases such as cancer". He said many 
people who smoked dagga grew up with it in their homes, so it was 
second nature to them. Naftali van de Heefe said he had been smoking 
for 40 years, and wasn't hurting anyone. The government was "dragging 
their feet because marijuana is a herb that people could grow in 
their backyards and they cannot collect tax on it".

Police spokesman Lieutenant Colonel Andre Traut confirmed the 
arrests, saying the four would appear in the Cape Town Magistrate's 
Court tomorrow on charges of "possession of dagga".
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MAP posted-by: Jay Bergstrom