The Rastafarian Society of Kenya have hit the court corridors today seeking the legalization of weed.
The Rastafarian society filed this petition at Milimani Law court seeking to be allowed to use and smoke cannabis so as to spiritually connect with their maker.
In the petition, The society says that the followers and believers of the Rastafarian faith use cannabis for ceremonial purposes as sacrament to manifest their faith and connect with their maker.
The group either have accused the security forces for intimidation , arrest ,prosecution, persecution and even imprisonment of their members for privately growing and using cannabis for spiritual purposes and for the sole purpose of connecting with the ‘Almighty Creator’.
“It is the Petitioner’s contention that the impugned section clearly show differential treatment on the basis of Religion and privacy perpetuates the culture, stigma and discrimination against the 1st petitioners’ followers through the continued use of archaic laws that violate the rights of the 1st petitioners’ members,” the court statement reads documents.
Through lawyer Shadrack Wambui and others, the Petitioner’s maintain that 10 years after the adoption of the Constitution of Kenya, the impugned section continues to exist in law without any justification and infringes on the rights of persons who profess and/or proclaim Rastafari beliefs.
“This therefore makes it criminal for rastas to assemble in prayer and partake the herb as a sacrament,” they argue.
Through their lawyers the Rastafarian society want the arrest and prosecution of their followers suspended as the members only use bhang for spiritual and private growth
Among the orders that the society is seeking is a declaration that section 3 (1), (2), (a) and (3) (a-d) of the Narcotic Drugs and Psychotropic Substances (Control) Act No. 4 Of 1994 is unconstitutional in as far as it discriminates the Rastafarian community on the basis of religion by criminalizing their spiritual growth and use of cannabis and treating them different from other mainstream religions, strips them of their dignity contrary to Article 27(4), and 28, of the Constitution.
They also want the court to issue a declaration that Section 3 (1), (2), (a) and (3) (a-d) of the Narcotic Drugs and Psychotropic Substances (Control) Act No. 4 Of 1994 is unconstitutional to the extent that it violates or threatens to violate the members of the 1st petitioner’s/the petitioners rights and other people professing the Rastafari faith.