CANNABIS CULTURE – How South Africa’s first members-only cannabis club fell to police violence (and what they plan to do about it.)
Neil Liddell is the founder of The Haze Club, South Africa’s first member-cannabis club.
The Haze Club launched after South Africa decriminalized cannabis in 2018. The club thrived in the community for more than two years – until October of 2020 – when police raided the building, tore down grow equipment seized plants and arrested Liddell. The Haze Club was forced to suspend operations – devastating the local community.
Now, Liddell is challenging South Africa’s cannabis laws in the country’s highest court. On the compassion club’s instagram profile the group states their position “boils down to a simple argument: we maintain that it is your right to employ someone ((i.e. The Haze Club) to grow your cannabis for you.”
Liddell says the strict reality of decriminalization has fallen far short of government promises.
Domestic growers have been left with a leash around their necks. At the heart of the conflict is the South African government’s stance that THC does not operate in a private space. So, if members of the public can join a cannabis club, it becomes a public