Erykah Badu was scheduled to perform at a concert in Kuala Lumpur tomorrow night, but when Malaysian officials came across an image of the singer’s body art, which includes the Arabic word for Allah on her shoulder, they shut her event down, saying Erykah isn’t a suitable role model for young Malaysians who are mostly Muslim.
Information Minister Rais Yatim said in a statement that government officials forbid Erykah’s concert because her body art is “an insult to Islam and a very serious offense.” He added that the photo of the artwork, which appeared in Malaysia’s most widely read English-language daily, The Star, “triggered public criticism that could jeopardize national security and cause a negative impact to the government’s image.”
Because Erykah was already in Malaysia, government officials said that she can stay as a tourist but will not be allowed to perform. Razman Razali, managing director of the show’s Malaysian organizer, Pineapple Concerts, told Reuters Erykah is “worried and dismayed” and said his company hopes the decision will be reversed.
Do you think Erykah still has a chance of performing?
Brande Victorian is a blogger and culture writer in New York City. Follower her on Twitter at @be_vic.
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