Monday, May 7, 2012

Western Cape: Marchers call for legal dagga

The New Age Online
Francis Hweshe and Ina Sosana

Hundreds of people took to the streets of Cape Town at the weekend demanding the legalisation of marijuana.
Led by the Dagga Party, the colourfully dressed protesters of all races marched from the Grand Parade in the city centre to the Cape Peninsula University Technology in District Six.

Cheered on by motorists who blew their horns, the protesters held placards bearing messages such as "Ganja is the healing of the nation" and "Legalise dagga".
Some people smoked the drug openly while shouting out that it should be legalised. Dagga Party leader Jeremy David Acton said the march was meant to show solidarity and pride in the diverse communities that smoke marijuana and was part of a global campaign for legalising the drug.

A wheelchair-bound man, aged 27, who was part of the march, said: "I might not be able to walk but I will stand up for my right to smoke."

The man, who declined to be named, said that four years ago, he ended up in a wheelchair after breaking his neck and smoking dagga was a good painkiller.

Nadine van Heever, 20, from Kuilsriver, who has been smoking for the past five years, said that if the drug was legalised it would pull many people out of poverty and also better the economy of the country.

For example, she cited that hemp could be used to build homes that were strong and "keep the people warm". Ross Coetzee from Paarl said dagga could be used to treat diseases such as cancer, asthma and epilepsy.

Acton said there would be more pro-dagga marches in the future. The march was part of the Global Marijuana March around the world on Saturday.

Born 14 years ago, the march is an international event where people come together to advocate the legalisation of ''pot''.

Despite an estimated turnout of between 250 and 400 people, one of the event organisers, Imiel Visser, said that the day was an overall success despite disruptions by police at the end.

Visser is part of the South African branch of the US-based National Organisation for Reform of Marijuana Laws (Norml).

Writing on the group's facebook page user Lauren Barwick said: "What a beautiful day in Cape Town! Times are changing!

It was amazing to see how many people cheered for us and hooted in their cars and gave us the thumbs up.
Moms and dads included with children in their cars. Wow! What an eye opener! Very inspiring." Another user, Alex Dowding wrote: "What a fantastically incredible march! Respect to ALL the guys and girls who made it there."-WCN

No comments:

Post a Comment