Danah Alleyne and her father David
Hip-hop superstar Akon is touring the U.S. with the help of major U.S. corporations, including a partnership with Verizon, despite being under investigation for a simulated rape of a 14-year-old preacher’s daughter caught on video last month at a concert in Trinidad.
Patrick Manning, prime minister of Trinidad, called for a formal investigation of the explicit April 12 performance at Trinidad’s Club Zen, which has since been closed by authorities.
“I have taken very careful notice of this matter and the owner of Zen owes it to the public to take responsibility,” said Manning. “I will be interfacing with Zen because that kind of thing should never be allowed to happen in this country.”
Security Minister Fitzgerald Hinds described the on-stage antics with Danah Alleyne as “lewd.” He insists Akon should be prosecuted.
Akon’s act in Trinidad
(Warning: Contains sexually explicit, graphic, disturbing material).
The girl is the daughter of Flaming World Ministry pastor David Alleyne. She came forward, with her father, to apologize for going on stage with the Senegalese-American Akon, saying she regrets attending the concert.
The shocking video has been pulled from the popular video site YouTube, though copies of it can be found on many other Internet sites.
The teen said she was permitted into the club despite being underage. She was part of what was characterized as an impromptu dance competition announced by the singer. The competition featured seven girls. Akon promised a trip to Africa to the winner. After the teen “won” the contest, Akon announced the Africa prize was actually him.
“I got carried away, I started to dance as well, but I never thought it was going to be like that,” Danah Alleyne told the Trinidad Express. “I was shocked. My head was hitting the floor.”
Other officials in Trinidad have called for Akon to be banned from further public performances on the island.
The video shows Akon throwing Alleyne on the floor like a “rag doll” and simulating violent sex with her in various positions. The crowd cheers the entire ordeal.
Though Akon and his managers have refused comment on the incident, his defenders on the Internet have attacked the girl for her provocative dress and alluring looks.
“This whole hip hop thing is a guise and I don’t want any part of it,” said the girl later. “I don’t want any part of it. Look at what I have to go through with one mistake that I made. My Dad warned me every time and I didn’t listen. I am sorry.”
She says now her only dancing will be in the dance ministry of her father’s church.
Her father did not know his daughter attended the concert until he saw pictures of the act in the newspapers the next day.
“He saw the pictures and I told him about it as well because I did not want him to hear it from anyone,” said Danah. “But when he saw the video, it really did take a toll on him. He always warned me about this. He doesn’t allow me to go to parties. He would always say, ‘It is not for you. It is not for you.'”
Her father called the act “atrocious.” He holds the singer and the club responsible for victimizing his daughter and other girls.
“They are innocent to the wicked ways of the world and it is our responsibility as elders to keep them safe,” he said.
Besides the controversy in Trinidad, Akon has served jail time for armed robbery and drug sales. But that hasn’t stopped him from appearing recently as a guest performer on “American Idol” and receiving corporate support from companies like Verizon.
Earlier this year, Verizon Wireless announced a partnership with him on a marketing campaign to promote mobile music phones and appear in a TV ad currently airing throughout the U.S.
“Akon has emerged as one of the world’s most compelling and exciting stars,” said John Harrobin, vice president of marketing and new media for Verizon. “His commitment to his artistry and the community enables us to take our partnership with music industry innovators in yet another direction by collaborating on this unique TV advertising campaign.”
Recently Akon participated in a Verizon Wireless event celebrating Black History Month coinciding with the launch of a new store in Harlem.
Akon’s recording “Konvicted” was near the top of the Billboard album charts for weeks. He’s a best-selling performer in more than a dozen countries including the United Kingdom, France, Canada and South Africa.
This is not the first time Akon has been criticized for dirty dancing. In his video for his hit “Snack Dat,” Akon hits actress Tara Reid on her behind and then sandwiches her in a sexually provocative way between himself and another man.
Police officers were in the club during the act but did not intervene. Leela Ramdeen, chairwoman of the police service commission, said an investigation into why is under way.
“If there is any negligence on the part of the police, the necessary action will be taken,” said Trevor Paul, commissioner of police.
“I was shocked when Akon pulled me to dance,” said Danah in a public apology last month. “I did not know what to do and with the crowd cheering and stuff I guess I got a little carried away. But there was nothing I could have done about it. I was in a state of real shock. I am so sorry for everything. I am sorry for disappointing my parents and my brother Ian, who is a public figure in his portfolio as the president of the Trinidad and Tobago Crime Watch. I will learn from this experience for sure. This week was the worst week of my life.”
Akon is performing this summer at some of the biggest arenas in the U.S. – including Giants Stadium June 3.
Born in St. Louis, Akon is the son of Senegalese parents. He served a total of five years in prison. In late 2005, his manager Robert Montanez was killed in a drive-by shooting. Akon was in the car and was shot in the shoulder, however he made a full recovery. He professes to be a Muslim and a believer and practitioner of polygamy.
His record label operates in partnership with Interscope Records, a U.S. company owned by Universal and and UMG’s Interscope-Geffen-A&M label group, a giant in the entertainment industry.
David Geffen, one of the largest music magnates int he world, was a major political contributor to Bill Clinton and is now supporting Barack Obama.
Akon is currently working on his first movie. He has his own clothing line and diamond distribution company.