>> Andrew Krieger stand at Africa's first ever cannabis exposition displays an indoor growing tent complete with state of the art lighting and fittings for a high tech irrigation system. The one thing it doesn't have, any cannabis plant. The four day Pretoria Base Expo is a stock illustration of the current legal gray area the Naissant industry occupies in South Africa.
In September the constitutional court decriminalized the use and cultivation of cannabis in private spaces. But that decision doesn't legalize its trade or distribution, and even displaying cannabis in public remains legally dubious. While most exhibitors heeded that unspoken rule, some people were not so keen. This cannabis activist handed out cannabis buds from a plastic bag at the expo entrance, encouraging attendees to bring them inside.
Calling expo organizers dealers, he was forcibly removed by security. Under the court decision, lawmakers have two years to amend the country's cannabis laws, but the industry isn't waiting.>> That cannabis is big business, and ultimately it's about exploring every avenue, every side of the cannabis industry which I think most people don't realize just quite how big the cannabis industry is.
In Africa already, in South Africa already.>> Many store holders believe that a fully legal domestic industry is now only a matter of time. There are even two more cannabis fairs planned in Capetown and Durban in the new year. But while opponents continue to suggest a link between heavy use of marijuana and psychotic disorders, full legalization could be a long time coming.