Case Update, Doctors For Life apply to be ‘expert witness’ for the State.

By |Published On: January 16th, 2013|


Just as most  South Africans are doing, the DC are getting settled back into things after the  summer  break. We are putting the 2013 plan into motion.
The legal side of our case plodded along in 2012, and as it plodded our real focus became the civil side of the matter. Courts don’t change laws – politicians, and the will of the people do. So to this end, we spent all our energy increasing our support base. Our social media presence went from strength to strength and is attracting people from more and more diverse places and backgrounds.

We now have over 100 representatives country wide armed with information and some passion to  spread the word on the street. Info Packs are being mailed all over the country, thanks for the support! The Dagga discussion is well and truly up and running in SA, more so than ever before. National newspapers have been regular in their publishing of Dagga articles and the comments sections online have always been lively. After all, the debate surrounding the cannabis plant is the most polarised debate worldwide right now.

There were some legal developments during the course of the year . We kept them close to our chests at the time, to see how things would pan out.

In July 2012, Doctors For Life  filed a request with the court to join the case on the State’s side. In essence, their argument is that the Government doesn’t have expertise in the medical profession pertaining to Dagga abuse and addiction and therefore DFL have requested to become expert witness for the State.

We know DFL. We had some dealings with them during the course of 2012. They are a Christian based medical fraternity who are dead against ‘illegal drugs’, abortion, stem cells and homosexuality. A pro life organization with a religious ethic with reportedly over 1300 members worldwide.
Their submission was accepted but the State required more reasoning from DFL as to why they would want to join the case. We saw the supporting affidavit in October 2012 and when you get past the legal jargon, DFL want the medical ‘expert witness’ job because they are more than qualified to talk about the dangers of Dagga addiction.
The State hasn’t replied yet (that we know of) and the DC will not oppose the application. If we had a spare R200K or so, we might oppose it just to put a spanner in the works, but we don’t, so we’ll wait and see what happens next. The views of DFL are the antithesis of the DC’s and we know that organisations like DFL are visionaries of a drug free world and see their world from a moral standpoint. Science will win the day and events worldwide concerning the failure of the ‘war on drugs’ and the legalisation of Dagga in Colorado and Washington will now hopefully make an impact on the State’s reply.

For the legally inclined, the Doctors for Life affadavit can be downloaded here. and for Below The Lions excellent take on Doctors for Life, click here

We will report back when we have more news about our new “opponents” and look forward to letting everyone know some concrete, tangible news from the legal front soon.

Jules & Myrtle


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About the Author: Jules Stobbs

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  1. Cleve April 17, 2013 at 6:38 pm - Reply

    I just think that this is total non-issue. I watched my father, a truly brilliant man, drink himself to death. Not a day passes that I don’t wish that his drug of choice was marijuana instead of that body and soul rotting drug, alcohol.

    • Andrew Arnesen February 18, 2014 at 7:46 pm - Reply

      Cannabis actually helps people with alcoholism… It causes them to consume less to feel the same effect, pass out earlier, helps with ameliorating hang-overs as well as re-generation of the damaged cells in the brain, liver, kidneys, etc.

      I have also heard said that many of the hallucinogens (of which cannabis is a member) have, along with supportive psychological assistance, the potential to cure alcoholism completely. Seems that after a really mind-expanding LSD trip one starts to see alcohol differently and as totally irrelevant… Oh, and terminal patients fed LSD also lose their fear of death entirely…

      I know this may be a bit off topic so just saying. But many parts of the world are re-examining hallucinogens, particularly as there is no known hallucinogen that is physically dependence producing: a distinction that seems relevant to the DC’s case. Other, harmful drugs, such as cocaine and heroin as well as nicotine, modify the metabolic pathways of the individual user. That is why they suffer terrible withdrawal symptoms as their body is forced to re-alter the pathways back to where they were. That is what I would term ‘physical dependency’. There is also ‘psychological dependancy’ but that, in terms of changing it, is the same as a bad gambling swearing habit and can be changed by positive, mindful replacement. The same is true of cannabis because it does not modify bio-chemical pathways in the human body. The opposite is true actually, as it has recently been discovered that the body has an endo-cannabinoid system and that in the human brain there are cannabinoid specific receptors. Cannabis taken in externally bolsters this system and acts in a supportive and regenerative role in many cellular level activities.

      If the loony, medical, tea-cup-type-denialist characters want proof, I would be happy to dig it out. Oh, and incidentally, cannabis is widely accepted by biblical scholars to be an ingredient of the holy anointing oil as described in… Exodus?? Pardon, bit rusty there…

      I hope that I can be of assistance to anyone out there with cannabis ‘problems’- I have been a scholar and a user for many years and have studied an immense volume of information relating to cannabis.

      The Green Will Reign Supreme!

  2. Wayne_ March 9, 2013 at 12:58 am - Reply

    I strongly agree, that SA should legalise Marijuana for recreational use. I am currently doing my honours degree in econometrics, and want to do my thesis with a side line view of what are the economic prospects for SA in terms of econometric analysis. I believe this – as it is in-deed a huge trend spoken about, and with recent legalisation in California – I think South Africa needs to look to America and why they legaliised it in California ect. As a result, by November 2013. I will have relevant econometric analyses, needed to viably support the economic benefits from legallising the the plant. Holding thumbs that the group gets even further with their progress, will keep you guys posted on the thesis. :’)

  3. Irba January 24, 2013 at 10:47 am - Reply

    I am a 50 year old, white, Afrikaans, male who smoked (take note, I stopped 3-4 years ago) marijuana on a daily basis, I work for a very prestigious company, hold a highly qualified position and work primarily with professionals.

    I started smoking at the age of 16 on a daily basis. I did this through my last 2 years of school, 7 years of varsity. I have a doctorate in my profession. I smoked the equivalent of up to 20 joints per day, never before work, but after. I smoked in excess of a ‘bankie’ per day over weekends and smoked like this for the last 15 years of smoking. I illegally grew plants in my back-yard and regularly harvested and smoked what I grew. This happened pretty much for 29-30 years of my life. NOTE: I never sold, supplied nor distributed anything.

    The day I decided to stop smoking cannabis, i had myself fully tested by first of all my doctor and then by Mediclinic. (I informed my doctor of my habit and that I did a “cold turkey”.) I did a battery of tests for more than 3 months and guess what, No side effects. No withdrawals, Nothing to speak of. I just stopped…

    The problem I faced for almost 30 years of my life was I (1)Always felt like a criminal, (2)Had to permanently associate with criminal elements to get supplied, (3)Had to see and get exposed to more illicit drugs that I did not care for and (4)Had to live a double life for longer than I cared for.

    I have, over this 30 years, been in contact with all kinds of drug-addicts due to my ‘habit’ and I have seen destruction of lives because cannabis is illegal. The reason for this is the same person selling ‘dagga’ also sells ‘buttons’, ‘E’s’, ‘LSD’ and speed. For any young person the so-called ‘gateway-drug’ ‘dagga’ represents is not ‘dagga’, but what surrounds it.

    I believe very much the legalization of cannabis will also (1)Empty jail cells, relieving the taxpayers the burden to feed and house criminals, (2)Relieve our justice system of ‘petty’ cases, (3)Stop or lessen the exposure of younger people to ‘hard drugs’ and (4)Create revenue to our country by means of taxes and visitors.

    Legalization will also change the psychic of our social South African lives into a productive, positive way and (at least) 30% of our country’s population will not have a social stigma attached to their preferences.

    I hope South Africans will start educating themselves and not believe what mass-media and profit-driven pharmaceutical companies would like them to believe.

  4. Bean January 16, 2013 at 9:51 am - Reply

    “I think if the state has any common sense it will disassociate itself
    from such a group as government must respect all it’s citizen’s beliefs
    but it may not favor one over another.”……has there EVER been any common sense applied by the state to this topic?

  5. Sasha Dowding January 16, 2013 at 9:36 am - Reply

    The link for the DFL affadavit appears to be broken.
    Interesting development. The plot thickens. DC and NORML ZA Vs. the government and DFL. What an epic showdown this is shaping up to be!
    Any ideas who your expert witnesses are going to be yet or are you still trying to secure them?

  6. Werner January 16, 2013 at 8:33 am - Reply

    I don’t believe the state can be allowed to use witnesses that have an unfounded emotional view of a particular point. The points to argue will be constitution and what the good doctors can actually prove. Currently the amount of evidence in the scientific community overshadow any negative results they may be able to bring to the table.

    I think if the state has any common sense it will disassociate itself from such a group as government must respect all it’s citizen’s beliefs but it may not favor one over another.

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