Buju Banton is refuting rumours that the LGBT community pressured him to denounce “Boom Bye Bye.”

Boom Bye Bye has been causing controversy since it was released in 1992. Recorded by a then teenage Banton in 1988, the track denounces homosexuals and delineates violence towards them.

The backlash Banton received from the track was almost enough to silence his career as Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender (LGBT) rights groups lobbied for his ban at several concerts.

Buju Banton recently released a statement addressing the song;

“In recent days there has been a great deal of press coverage about the song ‘Boom Bye Bye’ from my past which I long ago stopped performing and removed from any platform that I control or have influence over,” The Grammy-winning Reggae singer said. “I recognise that the song has caused much pain to listeners, as well as to my fans, my family and myself. After all the adversity we’ve been through I am determined to put this song in the past and continue moving forward as an artist and as a man.”

“I affirm once and for all that everyone has the right to live as they so choose,” Banton continues. “In the words of the great Dennis Brown, ‘Love and hate can never be friends.’ I welcome everyone to my shows in a spirit of peace and love. Please come join me in that same spirit.”

Following Banton’s statement, Dancehall/Reggae fans become furious and suggested that he was pressured into shunning Boom Bye Bye, however the “Wanna Be Loved” singer’s publicist Ronnie Tomlinson, says the stance is similar to back in 2007 when he signed the Reggae Compassionate Act.

The act was drafted in 2007 as part of the Stop Murder Music campaign, a human-rights groups coalition, which advocates for lesbians, gays, bisexuals and trans-identified persons.

“We don’t want it to seem as if he was pressured or that people were saying he cannot be on shows if he doesn’t give a statement. We realised that there were some concerns and so we just decided to say it again,” Tomlinson said.

Following Buju Banton’s return to Jamaica last December, Boom Bye Bye has been popping up across the world which caused the LGBT community to become concern, “We know he hasn’t performed the song since 2007, but we realised that was 12 years ago and so maybe others didn’t know,” Tomlinson added.

She also shared that Buju Banton has since matured and evolved since recording Boom Bye Bye years ago, “It’s a man who has seen life, who has gone through so much that is making this statement, a man who is saying ‘hear wah, to each man their own’. I think many of us have now come to that term now where we’re saying you live your life and I’ll live mine,” Tomlinson continued. “His music is about love, his legacy is about love, that’s what he wants to be remembered by.”

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