Nicki Minaj has urged Michael B. Jordan to change the name of his rum brand amid accusations of cultural appropriation.
The “Black Panther” star celebrated the launch of J’Ouvert Rum over the weekend, when girlfriend Lori Harvey shared pictures on social media.
But followers were quick to accuse the actor of cultural appropriation as J’Ouvert is a long-running annual street party that celebrates Caribbean culture, and is held in Trinidad, Tobago and Grenada, and in many Caribbean islands and countries where its people have immigrated.
Amid the controversy, Nicki – who herself is from Trinidad – weighed in on the accusations, and urged the screen star to consider giving the alcoholic drink a different moniker.
“I’m sure MBJ didn’t intentionally do anything he thought Caribbean ppl would find offensive,” she wrote on Tuesday. “But now that you are aware, change the name & continue to flourish & prosper.”
Following Nicki’s post and the response from fans, Michael took to his Instagram Story on Tuesday night to apologize.
“I just wanna say on behalf of myself & my partners, our intention was never to offend or hurt a culture (we love & respect) & hoped to celebrate & shine a positive light on,” he began. “Last few days has been a lot of listening. A lot of learning & engaging in countless community conversations…”
“We hear you. I hear you & want to be clear that we are in the process of renaming. We sincerely apologize & look forward to introducing a brand we can all be proud of.”