The Foota Hype immigration saga has taken a new twist, as newspaper reports surfaced today, saying the veteran Dancehall selector is being supported by his wife and he is “as happy as a lark,” even though he remains in detention, and his fate with respect to his US immigration status, hangs in the balance.
Foota Hype, whose real name is Oneil Thomas, is said to be high and merry despite being detained for the past three weeks at the Krome Service Processing Center in Miami, an immigration holding facility.
The Jamaica Observer quoted a source close to the selector as saying that the 37-year-old is “in great spirits, laughing and joking as usual.” The spokesperson also noted that Foota has a clean record sheet and that as a consequence, he is unbothered.
“He has been in frequent contact with his wife; they are good. She will be in court to support him once ICE (Immigration and Customs Enforcement) grants him a court date,” the source said, before noting that Foota’s lawyer had said, “it would take anywhere between 30 to 60 days to get a court date.”
The Observer reported that rumors being circulated on the internet that Foota’s wife had filed for divorce and that he was facing deportation are not true and that even though they were estranged, the couple had been in communication daily.
Foota Hype was detained on Saturday, December 14, when he arrived at Port Everglades Seaport aboard the Independence of the Seas cruise ship, from Falmouth, Jamaica. The Calabar High School old boy had been aboard the cruise ship as part of the Welcome to Jamrock Reggae Cruise and had traveled to Jamaica and back the US.
Persons who responded to the Observer story were not pleased with the revelation that Foota appeared to be quite content to be held at the mercy of the US authorities, and blasted the Cassava Piece native for appearing to be uncharacteristically genuflecting to the immigration officials.
“Don’t tell me he is at a destitute stage all in need of a US visa,” one man remarked.
Another commenter prhayz, lambasted the entertainer for not handling his personal affairs in a sensible manner, noting that Foota seemed not to be as street-smart as he portrayed himself to be.
“Foota cannot be okay. The US immigration authorities have taken away his freedom… I am shocked that an inner-city kid who went to a prestigious high school did not have the wits to handle his immigration affairs better,” he said.
“What is even more shocking is his lack of street smarts. One expects a person who was a regular staple on social media ranting or advising people on how to conduct their lives would have a more principled approach to his livelihood,” he added.