Tanzanians on Twitter have launched an online petition to have Diamond Platnumz disqualified from the 2021 BET Awards under the Best International Act category.
The petitioners accused Diamond of actively and publicly supporting deceased Magufuli’s regime’, but remaining silent when fellow Tanzanian artists were imprisoned and abducted in 2017-2018 over video clips deemed obscene by the authorities.
The petition, which has been signed by over 17,000 people reads thus;
“This is a call to BET Awards hosted and produced by Black Entertainment Television (BET) to disqualify Diamond Platnumz.
Diamond Platnumz is a world-renowned Tanzania music artist who used his popularity and his talent to whitewash and deodorize the brutal repression of the late dictator John Magufuli and his regime. Diamond is also a close friend and business ally of Paul Makonda the former Governor of Dar-es-Salaam who has openly persecuted and cracked down on LGBTI people. Makonda has also been designated in 2020 by the US State Department for gross violations of human rights including cracking down on freedom of expression and association.”
They wrote in detail, the context of their petition, Platnum’z’s role, and the reason he should b disqualified. The reasons they listed for Diamond’s disqualification include:
“Diamond Platnumz has failed to show basic concern and publicly express any solidarity with his fellow artists like Roma Mkatoliki, Nay wa Mitego and Idris Sultan who suffered at the hand of the dictator Magufuli.
Diamond Platnumz chose to protect and expand his personal and business interest by praising and using his star power to soften the image of a brutal dictator and his collaborators.
BET awards have been always held in high esteem by many Africans for their recognition of the talent of exemplary artists. The international act which was established in 2018 has consistently gone to artists who have been very conscientious and stood up for justice for African lives. Both Davido (2018) and Burna Boy (2019 and 2020) have been in the frontline at the #EndSARS protests using their star power and fame to shed light on injustice and even protect civilians from police brutality. Diamond Platnumz is a selfish, greedy opportunist and an apologist of a repressive regime who chose to deliberately turn a blind eye to atrocities and associate, praise and collaborate with renowned human rights violators like Paul Makonda and John Magufuli.
We believe that once BET independently verifies these facts, it will be clear that Diamond Platnumz does NOT deserve ANY recognition in these prestigious awards”.
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