Dancehall singer banned from St Lucia charged with murder

Jamaican dancehall singer Vybz Kartel

Controversy has again been stirred up and Jamaican deejay Vybz Kartel is smack in the middle of it. This time around Kartel, also known as Adidja Palmer has been charged with the possession of an illegal firearm. Additionally, Kartel will face multiple charges including murder and conspiracy to murder.
Kartel was arrested early Monday morning and initially was charged for possession of ganja. Cops armed with a warrant found a small quantity of ganja inside his hotel room in New Kingston.
According to regional news reports, allegedly on Monday, July 11 the entertainer along with other men conspired to murder 27-year-old Jamaican promoter and businessman Barrington Burton. Burton was murdered while he was standing with friends.
Palmer’s attorney Christian Tavares-Finson told media his client was prepared to face the charges. Meanwhile discussions are underway with LIME Jamaica on the way forward as LIME is the corporate sponsor of the locally produced reality TV show Teacha’s Pet, which has Palmer as the main character.
In April last year the Jamaican entertainer was banned from performing at a local concert. The St Lucia government denied granting him a work permit and though their reasoning was vague, mention was made in a government press statement about the artiste’s possible impact on “vulnerable youth in our midst.”
Other deejays like Bounty Killer and Mavado have in the past been banned from entering Guyana because of lyrics the country’s home affairs ministry said posed a security risk. Just last month Kartel was banned from the airwaves in Guyana by government. The state-owned radio network in Guyana said he had been banned from the airwaves because of obscene lyrics. The recent decision was the first of its kind to be made by that government against a specific artist.
Recently Barbados’s prime minister said no to a Mavado/Vybz Kartel Unity Show. Kartel has also been banned from performing in Grenada in the past because of violent lyrical content. He was barred from performing at a show in Grenville, St Andrews. But while his lyrics are constantly under scrutiny Kartel has said on the record on numerous occasions that his lyrics are a representation of society:
“I realized that the people were not eating out my hands but they wanted to hear Kartel speak because finally somebody was telling their story in a profound no holds barred manner. Whether I was addressing sexuality, poverty, police brutality, injustice, the trials and tribulations of the ghetto I was finally giving ghetto people a voice—a big voice like society never heard before.”
Kartel is not the first Dancehall artiste to be accused of having violent or sexually explicit lyrics and certainly will not be the last. Those who follow the artiste would agree that the tone of his music has changed significantly ever since his debut. In recent times his more popular hits have had more to do with women and money than violence. And between all the ‘smutty’ lyrics are some really significant messages. As with any other type of music, some of his songs highlight real life situations, like “Teenage Pregnancy,” “Life Sweet”, “I’m Missing You A Lot” and a host of others. Tunes like “Last Man Standing” , “Laugh & Shot Dem Up” and “Sumaddy Affi Bawl” tell of another, perhaps more violent side of the popular singer/ songwriter.
A preliminary hearing took place on Tuesday at the Half-Way-Tree Resident Magistrate’s Court in Jamaica. More in Saturday’s STAR!

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