Cannabis in Senegal


The cultivation, sale, possession and consumption of any form of cannabis, recreational or medicinal, is completely prohibited in Senegal

Cannabis in senegal. According to the Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) and the African Development Bank, Senegal is among the African countries that export the most marijuana; at the same level as Nigeria, Ghana or Togo.

Senegalese marijuana is known as “Yamba”, and it is a phenotype of mediocre quality that is sold with seeds, leaves and even small stems.

Besides being illegal, both its consumption and its sale are very badly seen by the Islamic society of this country that, in addition to yamba, exports illegal emigration.

The number of consumers in Senegal is very large. But for religious reasons, social stigma and above all, to avoid being arrested by the police, consumers are very discreet. Yamba’s consumption in Senegal is as frowned upon by Muslim fundamentalism that prevails in Senegal as alcohol consumption. But this happens in front of the public. The reality is different.

Understanding the culture of the Senegalese is almost impossible for Westerners. All the foreign companies end up bringing their own workers because the Senegalese, as soon as he has what he needs for that day, stops working.

However, in this country there are some sectors that in addition to accepting their role as consumers, wear it with pride and part of their particular idiosyncrasy. One of these groups is made up of the mythical Rastafarians, who began to be aware of their identity since Bob Marley visited Africa in 1978.

In the second place we have one of the most particular groups in the world of Islam: the Baye Fall. In effect, they are a sector of Islam that are considered special for their esoteric and magical knowledge. For reasons that are difficult to understand, despite being Muslim, they do not fast during Ramadan, drink alcohol and, of course, smoke Yamba.

It is very easy to recognize the Baye Fall. They are always dressed in multicolored African clothes and wear long dreadlocks. They are followers of Sheikh Ibrahim Fall, who was a faithful follower of the Prophet Muhammad. However, at present, the Baye Fall have been influenced by other cultures, especially the Rastafarian.

In theory they have adopted the precepts of rafastarism. They are supposed to have renounced the possession of wealth (which is absolutely false), are pacifists (also only in the theory) and resort to music to express their religious feelings. In fact they meet from time to time for parties where they play their timbales, drink alcohol and smoke marijuana until dawn.

The reality is that the Baye Fall are very “special” Muslims who also have a very bad reputation among the inhabitants of Senegal. They are considered lazy people who spend more time drinking alcohol and smoking marijuana than praying in mosques. However, if you travel to Snegal they are your best option to buy marijuana. They tend to be near the hotels where Western foreigners stay to offer themselves as guides and sell them marijuana.

Actually the export of marijuana from Senegal is difficult to quantify. However, in 2010 the group of the richest countries in the world, known as G8, called on numerous countries producing different drugs, such as Colombia, Jamaica, Haiti and some African countries, among which was Senegal. The intention of the G8 was to stop the financing of some terrorist groups such as the FARC or Al Qaeda.

The result of this meeting was a failure. Most of the Yamba that is produced in Senegal is grown in the south of the country, in an area called Casamanza. For more than 100 years, different factions have wanted to claim the independence of this territory, which ended with a small civil war in 1982.

The independence guerrilla was called Movimiento de Fuerzas Democráticas de Casamanza and from the beginning it commercialized the Yamba for its financing. Although the war ended in 2004, the inhabitants of Casamanza continued to defend their crops from Yamba to the present.

Cannabis remains illegal in Senegal. To find it is not necessary to go to Casamanza, among other things because its inhabitants do not like tourists. You can find it in Dakar, and you can also buy hashish. It is not hard to find, especially in the area of ​​Set Setal (Dakar), a neighborhood where its inhabitants claim their African culture; something that is deduced by the graffiti that adorn all the walls of the houses.

Despite growing mediocre marijuana, Senegal produces a considerable amount that is sufficient to supply local consumption and to export something to neighboring countries. But the government, once again, has declared war on cannabis and the burning of marijuana fields is frequent. The rebels defend themselves with firearms and many people die every year because of this, although this is not news for Western countries.

Understanding the culture of the Senegalese is almost impossible for Westerners. All the foreign companies end up bringing their own workers because the Senegalese, as soon as he has what he needs for that day, stops working.

In his novel “Life in a spiral”, which is a sociological study on Senegal and marijuana, the Senegalese writer Ndione tells the story of Senegalese children who live isolated in a small town near Dakar. They spend the whole day smoking Yamba. But for certain reasons they stay several weeks without their Yamba.

The protagonist decides to become a cannabis trafficker (sipikat), which ensures that he always has large quantities of marijuana for consumption and earn a lot of money with it. In this way, he begins a spiral life that helps him to enter the high spheres of cannabis trafficking and consumption among the most powerful classes and Muslim clerics in the country.

In this book, it is argued that the use of cannabis is or is not in accordance with the teachings of the Qur’an. In the end he comes to the conclusion that the Yamba is perfect to sharpen our senses and think with greater clairvoyance.

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