I did coke for 10 years - Ninja Man says many artistes were hooked on drugs in the '80s
Following news that iconic reggae artiste George Nooks was charged with cocaine possession, veteran entertainer Ninja Man has admitted to THE STAR that he took cocaine for 10 years before developing the strength to ditch the habit.
According to the artiste, the habit is mostly practised by vintage artistes since the cocaine epidemic was at its peak in the '80s. Ninja Man, who also showed support for George Nooks during the interview, said he is disappointed in the icon. However, he said the public must not be quick to judge.
"It was a serious problem in our days, and it eat out people brain. I spent 10 years smoking cocaine, and I saw what it was doing to people so I stopped. It wasn't because of no stress in the music business. It was just the thing to do at the time, and I am a mad man so mi just do it. It was holding back my career and some artiste used to lead me. From mi stop smoke cocaine, I was able to take my rightful place in the music industry," he said.
Ninja Man also named dropped artistes like Gregory Isaacs, Baby Wayne, and Banana Man, among a slew of others whom he said were hooked to the drugs. He noted that some recording artistes who died violently in the '90s and '80s were killed because of cocaine-related issues.
"Nuff artiste weh yuh hear seh dead from pneumonia, a cocaine kill dem. It is something that is addictive, and it was made to destroy the black man. If you sell cocaine, you are working for the devil, and if you are the customer, then it will lead you into the arms of the devil. Rum is also a serious thing that kills the brain cells," he said.
Interestingly, Ninja Man said he does not regret smoking the drug since the experience gives him the knowledge to steer others in more positive direction.
The industry was shocked recently when news of George Nooks' predicament was made public. Fans of reggae music were even more shocked in 2009 when reggae singer Buju Banton was caught on camera tasting cocaine. A poor decision that later saw him being sentenced to a decade in prison.
"George Nooks a mi father, and he is a good person. I have never hosted a show and him charge me a dollar. I am disappointed and mi vex, but mi nah go kill him because him a flesh and bones. The people dem weh a drop him from show must not do that because it's not cocaine singing the good songs, is Mr Nooks," Ninja Man said.