CAPE TOWN – In a landmark ruling, the Western Cape High Court has found it is legal for adults to use marijuana in private homes.
The ruling was handed down on Friday.
However, until the Constitutional Court confirms the ruling and refers it to the National Assembly it’s still illegal in terms of the country’s laws.
The court has allowed for the possession, cultivation and use dagga at home, for private use.
It’s also ruled that sections of the Drug Trafficking Act, as well as the Medicines Control Act, needed to be amended.
Activist and lawyer Gareth Prince said: “Although the Western Cape High Court made the finding today, our law requires that this finding will still have to be confirmed by the Constitutional Court. So obviously, we would have to go back to the Constitutional Court for a confirmation hearing. But we believe that it’s a slam dunk, it was a unanimous decision made here at the Western Cape court. Three judges declared the law to be unconstitutional.”
Prince added that they may ask for variations on some of the orders in the judgment.
“Technically speaking, it will only happen from the day that the Constitutional Court make the judgment. In the 24 months leading up to that now … basically they say if the police catch you, then you will be able to offer a defence that you possess the cannabis for personal reason. It’s not all that we are for, we might ask for a variation of that particular order.”
The application to decriminalise the drug was brought to the courts by the Dagga Party and Prince.
The ruling has been met with both humour and joy by people commenting on social media.