Singer Rema’s highly anticipated concert in Ethiopia has been cancelled due to concerns related to religious sentiments and suggestive imagery.
The Sheraton Hotel in Addis Ababa issued a statement, announcing the cancellation of Rema’s Ethiopian New Year’s Eve Concert, which was originally scheduled for September 9.
The decision came amid controversy surrounding allegations of “devil-worshipping” associated with the artwork on his customized necklace.
The symbols used by Rema, particularly a burning church featured on his necklace and used as a backdrop for his performances, were viewed as disrespectful and offensive by many Ethiopians.
The imagery, which included burning churches and inverted crosses, sparked significant public outcry and condemnation.
The Ethiopian Orthodox Tewahedo Church, with its deep cultural heritage and strong religious convictions, also expressed its condemnation of these symbols.
In response to mounting public pressure, the Sheraton Hotel Addis decided to cancel Rema’s event on New Year’s Eve.
The hotel’s management issued a statement, expressing deep regret for any offence caused by Rema’s planned performance and emphasizing their respect for Ethiopian culture, history, and religious values.
An Ethiopian woman interviewed by popular media personality Daddy Freeze confirmed her countrymen’s concerns.
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She explained that Rema’s necklace led to accusations of devil worship, which ultimately resulted in the cancellation of his show by the Ethiopian Orthodox Church.
She said: “They made a statement, like a press release in Ethiopia about Rema. Yes, you can imagine, it’s a very big deal.
Daddy Freeze then asked about the content of the press release, and what they said Rema did.
The lady replied; “They’re basically saying he’s a devil worshipper because of what he has on his neck. And to be honest, I never thought of it myself. And there’s more to it; to be honest.
Daddy Freeze said: “So, because of a necklace, I love religion; religion is such an amazing thing. So, because of Rema’s necklace, the Ethiopian Orthodox Church ‘cancelled’ his show.”