Sentence will be challenging, but Buju will return stronger, says music fraternity

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Buju Banton performing at New York's Apollo th...

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Members of the music fraternity have been reacting to the 10 year sentence handed down to Buju Banton on Thursday morning.

Gramps Morgan of Morgan Heritage fame who was at Thursday's hearing said the sentence although not the maximum penalty, will be challenging for the artiste.

 "The Lord was kind because it could have been worse, it could have been up to 25 years. It's still rough for any man to be away from their children for 10 years," he said.

And fellow artiste, Tony Rebel says the sentence should not be seen as the end for the reggae star's career.

 "It doesn't have to be a setback, you can use all the setbacks and go forward. He has enough time to meditate, reflect and to put things into perspective and he can always chart a path to the future,"

 "Prison doesn't have to be a setback, remember our first national hero went to prison; Mandela left from prison and became president, Malcom X, Martin Luther King a lot of great people went to prison. Prison was not made for dogs, nor rabbits nor cats it was for humans, so it's just for you to turn a negative into a positive and I hope he can do that," he said. 

In the meantime, Senior Lecturer of Reggae Studies at the University of the West Indies, Mona, Dr. Donna Hope-Marquis says although Buju Banton's absence from the music scene will be a big blow to the industry, she hopes he can rise above this major setback.   

 "I believe that this is a really significant blow to the reggae and dancehall industries because Buju Banton has been an icon of both reggae and dancehall and has really held the flag high and for him to be convicted of drug related offences which means that the Jamaican music industry will have another kind of light shining on it, a negative light. I am really saddened at what happened to the Gargamel I can only hope and I know that he will use this leg of his journey to produce music," Dr. Hope-Marquis said.

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