POPULAR rapper Jiji F, also known as Moji Mokotso, has skipped the country, alleging he received death threats from a Khubetsoana drug lord.
Feb. 9, 2024
RETHABILE MOHONO & MOSA MAOENG
6 min read
Rapper skips the country
Rapper Jiffy F, AKA Moji Mokotso
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This dire situation arises following the release of his ground-breaking documentary shedding light on the perils of crystal meth, a treacherous and addictive substance wreaking havoc among the youth in his community of Khubetsoana.
Crystal methamphetamine, commonly referred to as crystal meth, is an extremely potent and highly addictive stimulant substance. It takes the form of methamphetamine with a glass or rock-like appearance and can be consumed through smoking, ingestion, inhalation, or injection.
The Muso once revealed that his battle with substance abuse brought him to the brink of destruction, jeopardising his flourishing music career due to the influence of his peers.
The lingering effects of his addiction continue to haunt him, as he frequently experiences cravings.
In an effort to cut ties with drug suppliers, he made the decision to relocate from the bustling city of Maseru to a serene village.
JijiF was ensnared by cocaine and khat during his heyday as a prominent figure in the music industry. Reflecting on his past, he acknowledged that his electrifying stage performances were often fuelled by the effects of these drugs.
He confessed to the media that his indulgence in these substances was primarily driven by a desire to prolong the festivities, enhance his alcohol tolerance, and exert a commanding presence over his audience.
The Skipa Se Ntekane singer had recently left the spotlight and resolved to embark on a mission to caution the younger generation about the perils of narcotics, particularly the widely prevalent crystal methamphetamine.
This vital message is conveyed through an enthralling documentary titled “Crystal Meth”, which was unveiled in January 2023.
Lesotho, particularly the outskirts of Maseru and Berea, has witnessed the proliferation of crystal meth, impacting Khubetsoana, a village with a population exceeding 30 000, predominantly consisting of young individuals.
The village is renowned for its production of local artistic talent and boasts superior services and thriving businesses. However, it is also notorious for being a hub for drugs such as cocaine, weed, and crystal meth, which has resulted in a high crime rate, rampant drug and alcohol abuse among young people, and a significant number of school dropouts.
JijiF, a luminary emerging from this village, embarked on a noble endeavour by crafting a documentary on Crystal Meth. He said his intention was to advocate for the establishment of rehabilitation centres within the country since he has witnessed first-hand the extent of this predicament and empathises with friends who grapple with addiction, yearning for a path to liberation.
Following the documentary's release, Jiji F reported receiving death threats from a drug dealer he alleges he grew up with in Khubetsoana.
Therefore, he made a decision to flee the country for his own safety.
“I did not think this would be dangerous since we were not exposing the dealers or mentioning people’s names. I got a call from one of the drug dealers, and it was someone I knew personally, but I did not know he was one of the biggest smugglers of this drug in the country.
“He warned that I was putting my life in danger and that I should take the video off the internet. He told me that was the last time he was going to speak to me because, in his eyes, I was snitching,” he said.
He further told this publication that he was warned that other dealers were furious and looking for him.
“I spent two months away from Khubetsoana because I heard people were furious and had heard of what they did to my colleague who was helping me shoot the documentary. I reported my case to the police, and they expressed that they could not do anything unless I sued the guy. They also told me that they already know the guy but do not have evidence,” he said.
Jiji F further said he fled the country in September 2023 after he had reported the matter to the police unit of Diamond and Drugs at the Maseru Central Charge Office.
Police spokesperson, Senior Superintendent Kabelo Halahala acknowledged this week that there have been many cases of people arrested and taken to court for illegal drug trade, especially crystal meth.
He, however, told Public Eye reporters that he did not have a record of this particular case.
Meanwhile, two men, Lebohang Lesoli, 43, of Ha Thamae, and Neo Monongoaha, 38, of Ha Mabote, appeared in the Maseru Magistrate’s Court on February 2, 2024, accused of being in possession of illegal drugs.
The two were handed over to the police by the Lesotho Defence Force (LDF) department of rapid response after being found in possession of crystal meth and dagga.
They were granted bail of M3, 000 and surety of M20, 000 each, which they failed to pay, and were taken to the male correctional services facility in Maseru.
This publication has also undertaken to interview some residents to explore the negative impact of drugs, especially crystal meth, on the entire village.
Ntsebo Sehlabi (pseudonym) revealed that he was introduced to drugs by his peers after completing high school at the age of 17, and he has since been under the influence of crystal meth for the past three years.
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“Due to my underperformance in school, I dropped out and found myself with ample free time at home. Consequently, my friends and I decided to join a group that spends their days at the bar, indulging in excessive drinking and smoking,” he said, explaining that, initially, this was seen as a recreational activity, but it gradually became a means to escape the hardships of unemployment.
In an interview this week, a group of crystal meth users, all in their twenties, said they experience a heightened sense of confidence and belonging after using the drug.
However, this feeling is short-lived and often leads to a cycle of addiction as users continue to seek out the drug to maintain their high.
The cost of a bag of crystal meth is approximately M50, and users reported spending between M100 and M200 per day to sustain their habit.
In addition to the young men involved in drug use, there are also young women who have fallen victim to this destructive lifestyle, with some even falling pregnant at a young age.
During a conversation, one of such young women revealed that teenage pregnancy is a common occurrence in Khubetsoana due to the prevalent drug and alcohol culture.
She expressed her frustration with the lack of concern for underage individuals, as drugs and alcohol are readily available to anyone who seeks them.
“Despite the authorities being aware of the dire situation in Khubetsoana, no action has been taken to address the issue,” she added.
The young woman said she believes if someone were to take the initiative to intervene, many individuals would be saved from the trap of drug and alcohol addiction, and she herself may not have become a mother at such a young age.
According to Genderlinks.org.za, the 2014 Lesotho Demographic Health Survey (LDHS) revealed that teenage pregnancy in Lesotho is at a staggering 19 percent, with the highlands of the country being the most affected due to limited access to health services.
The Ministry of Health (MoH) has, however, implemented various programmes to combat teenage pregnancy, including Comprehensive Sexual Education in and Out of School and the Anti-Child Marriage Campaign Outreach Programme, which aims to increase family planning services for adolescents and young people.
The ministry also advocates for social behavioural change messages and condom distribution by civil society organisations.
On the other hand, ’Makananelo, a concerned parent, lamented that drugs have turned Khubetsoana into a breeding ground for gangsters, causing fear and unrest in the community.
Despite the authorities being aware of the situation, no action has been taken to alleviate the issue.
“Our children’s lives are in danger; they are a dead generation, and it is absurd that they are dying right before our eyes. I just hope there is a way the government can intervene before more danger occurs because most children are now school dropouts; some are even having mental health problems,” she said.