Comedian Jobert Austria could very well be considered as local showbiz's fast-rising comedians.
Thanks to his quick wits and perfect timing, he has earned his rightful place as one of Banana Sundae's regular mainstays.
But his success wasn't without its share of hurdles and stumbling blocks.
In 2014, Jobert headlined showbiz news programs when he tried to commit suicide by jumping off a hotel building in Quezon City.
It was during that time when he admitted his drug habit.
In his interview with PEP.ph (Philippine Entertainment Portal) last November 11, 2016, he recalled, “Katulad din naman po ng iba, halos karamihan.
“Galing sa walang-wala 'tapos biglang nagkaroon… nagkapera ka, masarap ang buhay, minsan napapariwara ka.
“Napupunta ka sa ibang barkada, e.
“Sumasama ka sa mali, kaya ayun, mali nga ako.
“Natuto na ako, ngayon namimili na ako ng kaibigan.”
PEP.ph caught up with Jobert again during the set visit of Home Sweetie Home where he plays Obet, one of Romeo [John Lloyd Cruz] and Julie’s [Toni Gonzaga] neighbors, last March 14, 2018.
Asked how things are going for him now that he’s drug free, he said, “Nagbago, 'tapos kinalimutan ko na yung mga dating kaibigan ko.
“Totoo po yun… tatalon ako ng building, di ba?
“Pagkatapos nun, nag-rehab ako, di ba?
“Diretso ako sa rehab, paglabas ko ayun, nagbago na.”
He clarified that he veered away from drugs way before the current administration's “war on drugs” took effect.
By the time President Duterte implemented his crackdown on drug users during the start of his term, Jobert has been “clean” for three years.
The Kapamilya artist emphasized, “Pinagmamalaki ko yun, isa siguro sa achievement ko yung nagbago ako, kaya naman… nasa tao talaga yun.”
His friends’ guidance and help had a huge impact on Jobert, allowing him to totally recover from his downfall.
“Direk Bobot [Edgar Mortiz], Si Angelica [Panganiban], si JL [John Lloyd] din, di nila ako iniwan, kasi mahihiya ka talaga pagka galing ka dun.
“Sinamahan nila ko pag-taping, naglalakad lang ako rito, sinasamahan nila 'ko maglakad.
“'Tapos, bumalik yung confidence mo sa sarili mo, kasi nga alam mo sa sarili mo na kaya mo ng tumayo ulit."
Before ending the interview, he noted one of the lessons that he took to heart: “Sabi nila, lahat naman may pagkakataong magbago.”
Interview: Arniel Serato