Ask any South African if weed cannabis is legal or not in this country and you’ll most likely get an unassured answer. Some people might say yes it is legal but will struggle to explain how.


Weed smokers might remember the day of days when the state parliament approved the Cannabis for Private Purposes Bill in September 2018.

So what is permitted by law regarding marijuana or weed or dagga in Mzansi? The bill allows adults to smoke in private homes, grow the substance, and exchange it with other persons in public but all under specific quantity limits.


So now that we understand the legal part, weed still remains subject to some relevant laws which could find a person in the back of a police van. The most standout law from the list of illegal rules is the prohibited selling of weed. It is against the law.

“An adult person may without the exchange of remuneration provide to, or obtain from, another adult person, for personal use the prescribed quantity of —
(a) plant cultivation material;
(b) plants; and
(c) cannabis,” the bill says.

Additionally, the South African amendment says it is also unlawful to smoke the substance in public. Secondly, it is illegal to smoke in front of children.

The key third law prohibits the exchange of cannabis with another person in public spaces.

The bill’s objective in summary:


  • Respect the right to privacy of an adult person to possess cannabis plant
    cultivation material; to cultivate a prescribed quantity of cannabis
    plants; to possess a prescribed quantity of cannabis, and to consume
  • Regulate the possession of plant cultivation material; the
    cultivation of cannabis plants; the possession of the plant; and the
    consumption of it by an adult person;
  • Protect adults and children against the harms of cannabis;
  • Provide for the expungement of criminal records of persons convicted
    of possession or use of cannabis;
  • Delete and amend provisions of certain laws; and provide for matters connected therewith.”


The South African

By Daniel

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