Zambia has barred veteran Rhumba musician Koffi Olomide from entering the country, citing criminal allegations against the singer as reason for their decision.
One of the allegations against the singer is that he assaulted a photojournalist in Zambia during his previous tour to the country in December, 2012.
Koffi Olomide, 62, has also been accused of sexually assaulting his dancers, kidnapping them and employing them without valid permits in France, the BBC reports.
Ahead of his now-cancelled visit, Olomide, a DR Congo national, had described Zambia as his “second home” and said he would like to perform in the country before “I die.”
The musician also sent an apology to Zambian citizens. His message was broadcast on a Zambian radio station.
The BBC says that the “Selfie” hit-maker does not specifically address the allegations against him.
Olomide was supposed to headline two concerts in Zambia this month.
The government had, however, warned the artiste that he will be arrested should he set foot in Zambia.
On Saturday, July 14, the French embassy in Zambia also called for the arrest of Olomide, the BBC says.
France’s ambassador to Zambia, Sylvain Berger, threatened to involve Interpol to arrest Olomide, whom he said has not yet been cleared of the allegations against him in France.
In July, 2016, the controversy-scarred Koffi Olomide was caught on camera kicking his female dancer on arrival at the JKIA in Nairobi. He was, consequently, deported.
In 2012, he was convicted in DR Congo of assaulting his producer. The court gave the singer a three-month suspended prison sentence.
The altercation with his producer, Diego Lubaki, was over a debt of about $3,700 (Ksh370, 000), the court heard.
In 2008, he was accused of kicking a cameraman from DR Congo’s private RTGA television station and breaking his camera at a concert in the capital, Kinshasa, following fallout over recording rights.
In the end, the Speaker of the National Assembly stepped in to resolve the dispute, mediating peace talks between Koffi Olomide and owner of the TV station.