Not only is CBD hemp oil legal in South Africa, but all types of marijuana has been declared legal for personal consumption.
The Supreme High Court of South Africa declared, in a unanimous decision, that the private use of marijuana is now legal. The ruling, held on Tuesday the 18th of September, stated a previous ruling issued by a lower court that had criminalized cannabis, was “unconstitutional and therefore invalid”.
Known as the rainbow nation, South Africa has a rich and diverse culture and the country is constantly encouraged to sing praises of this diversity and to respect the vast cultures that make up the nation. Included in this cultural tapestry is a strong community of Rastafari, who have long challenged the court system for their right to grow and use marijuana.
The high court ruling states that all adults are legally allowed to both use and cultivate marijuana in the privacy of their own homes. The cultivation of marijuana is only to be private consumption.
Deputy Chief Justice Raymond Zondo wrote in his judgment that an adult will not be committing a crime or any criminal offense if he is using or found to “be in possession of cannabis in private for his or her personal consumption.”
The selling and supply of cannabis as well as using cannabis or CBD hemp oil in public remains illegal. Cannabis is only legally permitted to be used and grown in private and for private consumption.
The Supreme High Court had given parliament 24 hours to adopt the new ruling. However, the question still remains: how much cannabis can be grown and is there a limit to the amount a person can have on him or her?
This decision is yet to be made by parliament.
CBD hemp oil has long been accepted by many South African citizens, albeit by some more than others. Marijuana even has its own South African nickname. Cannabis goes by dagga in South Africa, a South African slang word for the plant. There was talk earlier in the year that left many with the belief that marijuana was legal for private use, but no ruling had been issued. It was only with Tuesday’s Supreme High Court ruling that cannabis users throughout the country rejoiced.
Cannabis use amongst South Africans is common, and the destigmatization of the plant has already begun some years before. For many years, the illegal production of medicinal marijuana oil has been steadily growing. And in many areas of South Africa, the use of cannabis may be frowned upon by some, it is generally accepted by citizens of all ages.
But Just How Much is Deemed Enough for Personal Use?
The South African Police Service now has the responsibility of making this decision until exact numbers and limits are decided upon by the South African Parliament and the ruling government party, the ANC.
So, while South Africans wait for the details, how will they know their legal parameters?
Police are charged with discerning how much is for personal use and if a person is growing with the intent to sell. Apart from the extreme, a field of plants opposed to a single part in the backyard, what about those who are growing 8 – 10 plants? Or have a large stash of marijuana? Certainly, ever marijuana user will have different amounts that he or she will use and consume.
This is a gray area that is left up to police to apply judgment based on common sense and discretion.
According to Supreme Court Judge Zondo, the police if they suspect that the cannabis is not for personal use, reason will need to be applied and certain questions asked:
“If a police officer finds a person in possession of cannabis and he or she thinks it is not for personal consumption, he or she will ask the person such questions as may be necessary to satisfy himself or herself whether the cannabis he or she is in possession of is for personal consumption.
If having heard what the person has to say, the police officer thinks that the explanation is not satisfactory, he or she may arrest the person. Ultimately, it will be the court that will decide whether the person possessed the cannabis for personal consumption.”
Many South African citizens openly criticise the South African Police about many different issues and are not convinced that this is a sustainable plan to follow.
According to the Drugs and Drug Trafficking Act 140 of 1992, the limit for personal use is set at 115 grams. However, even if a South African is found to have less than that amount on his or her possession, he or she is suspect to suspicion.
With regards to CBD and CBD hemp oil, these are products that have been on the shelves of alternative health stores for many years now. Will these products be more heavily regulated now that marijuana has been declared legal for personal use? Only time will tell.
Camilla Morgan is a blogger by profession with 5 years of experience. She is associated with CBD Safe and selling pure Cannabidiol & Best CBD Hemp oil products in the USA. She is an admirer of sharing his innovative ideas with others on the Wellness for Mind and Body.