Since Lesotho, a kingdom encircled in South Africa with nearly 2 million citizens, announced it would issue a license to legally grow marijuana, other African governments are considering jumping on board. On the continent of Africa, more than 10,000 tons of marijuana is produced annually. Some estimate that the value of that crop would be well in the billions of dollars.
Lesotho’s move indicates a shift in opinion to a more liberal direction, and widespread interest on the continent to legalize marijuana exists from South Africa to Morocco, reports CNN. Each region, however, has challenges of its own to get to legal status.
Morocco is well known for its hashish. It produces the second most hashish according to the UN Office on Drugs and Crime. Afghanistan produces the most hashish. The production of hashish employs roughly 800,000 and may be worth as much as $10 billion in annual sales.
Morocco did attempt to legalize marijuana in 2014, but the bill failed. Thereafter, Ilyas El Omari, the leading legal marijuana advocate, resigned. Some are worried that legalizing marijuana in Morocco would devalue the crop.
Malawi, known for its high-quality marijuana, is experimenting with hemp cultivation. Malawi Gold is a highly sought after strain. Some think that marijuana legalization will come soon to Malawi as the Rastafarian minority is already demanding legalization.
The people of Ghana love marijuana. While marijuana is prohibited there, its use is tolerated. Legalization efforts are heating up in the country, and there is support from the former head of the Narcotics Control Board.
Swaziland is one of the poorest countries on the African continent, but it is rich in one thing: marijuana. Public leaders have attempted to legalize marijuana to boost the economy. Currently, a committee is being tasked with exploring the possibility of marijuana legalization.
South Africa is leading market demand for marijuana. Roughly 2,500 tons are produced in South Africa annually. There are ongoing legal battles to legalize marijuana in the area. The Dagga Party made a huge leap forward earlier this year when a ruling allows for individuals to use marijuana in their homes on private land. Medical marijuana guidelines are established in South Africa.
A lot of progress is being made on the African continent, and more change is expected in the near future. Multiple African governments are expected to change their policy, which could put the continent at the forefront for one of the biggest green rushes in the world.