The Dour Festival has taken the decision to withdraw the French rapper Koba LaD from its programming and cancel his visit on 19 July, following a publication of a homophobic nature posted by the artist on his Snapchat account.
"Since its creation, the Dour Festival has always seen itself as a place of sharing and tolerance, open to everyone regardless of gender or sexual orientation, and strongly condemns any kind of hate speech," the event's organisers state in a press release.
"It is after serious consideration and by keeping in mind the defence of this safe and respectful environment that the festival's management decided to delete Koba LaD from the programme," they concluded.
The rapper had posted a screenshot of a newspaper article with the (French) headline "This father kills his own 14-year-old son because he was gay: 'He prefers a dead son over a gay son'", with the caption "Well played" ('Bien joué'). He then added a row of handshake emojis.
Koba laD c’est vraiment une merde pic.twitter.com/BJfUdYoj9q
— kushinhõ j-18 (@Matt_vnk) February 16, 2020
He also posted two videos on Snapchat in which he defends himself. "I am not homophobic. Every man for himself, and God for us all," he said. "I don't approve of the murder at all. There's nothing else to see, it's irrelevant, it's a misunderstanding," he said, adding that he was under the influence of drugs at the time.
Koba Lad : « Non Twitter vous êtes des batards je me suis mal exprimer je cautionne pas le meurtre après l’enfant gay chacun pour sois dieu pour tous »
— ?? Young Mind ?? (@YoungGueshino) February 17, 2020
On his Twitter, he pinned a Tweet in which he said that he does not condone the murder and is against homophobia. He also said that he was not the one who added the "Well played" to the post, but that he just reposted it "in a few seconds on his phone."
Que sa soit clair une bonne fois c la dernière fois que je prends la parole à ce sujet !!! ?☠️✊? pic.twitter.com/ADGVw5eYG4
— #LAFFRANCHIDELUXE (@koba7binks) February 17, 2020
"I reacted with thinking, without weighing my words or realising the impact of that post," he said. "I am really sorry if I hurt or disappointed people."
The rapper's performances have been cancelled at several festivals because of his post.
The Dour festival will be held next 15-19 July.
The Brussels Times