“I realised I had a problem when I started losing belongings, was no longer seeing family and friends, and spent little time in the studio,”

FORMER Idols runner-up Mthokozisi Ndaba has stopped smoking and drinking.

Speaking to Daily Sun, he said he’d been struggling with addiction for three years.

“I was barely 18 when I started drinking, but I wasn’t a heavy drinker. My drinking problem started in 2017 after Idols,” he said.

“Gradually, I started smoking cigarettes. I guess I was depressed and I was doing anything to get out of it.”

Mthokozisi said it became worse in 2018 as he’d start and finish his day with vodka and hardly ate.

“I realised I had a problem when I started losing belongings, was no longer seeing family and friends, and spent little time in the studio,” he said.

Mthokozisi said when lockdown started, he’d already decided to quit.

“I did it for my son, who’s almost two now,” he said.

“Many times I toyed with the idea of getting professional help but decided otherwise. I’ve decided to fight this demon on my own.”

Mthokozisi said he kept himself busy doing chores, cooking, spending time with his son and exercising.

His wife Nandipha Sefoloko said he’d been sober for three months.

“It’s been a long, painful journey for all of us,” she said.

Nandipha said Mthoko will release his new single, Linda, tomorrow.

Sagren Naidoo of Alcoholics Anonymous said millions used lockdown as an opportunity to stop drinking.

“The most important thing is realising you have a drinking problem. We recommend joining the AA. Our services are free.”