High expectations for Extravaganja launch
Dr Jalaani Niaah does not "expect any problems with the law" at tomorrow's Ganja Extravaganja launch party, which will be held at the Students Union, University of the West Indies (UWI), Mona Campus tomorrow.
Niaah coordinates the Rastafari Studies Centre at the UWI, as well as the Centre for Ganja and Cannabis Research.
Tomorrow's event raises the curtain on the Extravaganja, to be held at the UWI from February 3 to 4, 2017, for which a ganja exemption is being sought.
However, Niaah does not expect any issues with the police.
Gates open at 5 p.m. and the official launch activities take place from 6 p.m. to 9 p.m. After that, the party will be resumed.
Slated performers are Leroy Sibbles, Sizzla, Richie Spice, Bugle, Tyrikal, Icient-Cy Mau and the Mau Mau Warriors, Veza Rebel, Steppa, and Fyah George, among others.
Selectors for the evening are Ilawi from Jah Love, playing on Armageddon International; Ricky Trooper on Sound Trooper; and DJ Beenie.
The Ganja Exrravaganja is being organised in association with Decriminalisation Herb Advocacy and Public Awareness (DHAPA) - which grew from the Rastafari-centred Chalice Circle - with Inner City Dub also involved in staging the event.
Music is part of next year's two-day event, after workshops and discussions during the day.
Coming at the beginning of Reggae Month and Black History Month, Niaah said: "the idea of the Ganja Extravaganja is constructed from a space of seeking to build a public movement that can travel around the country, parish to parish, galvanising herbal awareness. We are using it as an opportunity to develop a green, eco-friendly philosophy".
Niaah pointed out that at tomorrow's launch party, there are inter-generational connections and that there is an effort to pull together the smaller players in the marijuana business who could be left behind in the developing effort to formalise a marijuana industry.
"Our emphasis is grass-roots connections," Niaah said.