Malaysia cancels concert 'due to singer's support for LGBT people'

Malaysia cancels concert 'due to singer's support for LGBT people'

Denise Ho won't be performing in Malaysia

Friday, February 16, 2018

A singer from Hong Kong has claimed she has been stopped from performing in Malaysia because of her gay rights activism.

Denise Ho, who is openly gay, alleges her promoter was told by officials from the country that her LGBT support meant her request to hold a performance was turned down, according to Reuters.

She told the Thomson Reuters Foundation she's "disappointed" the Kuala Lumpur event can't go ahead and explained she's realised that, whilst it often appears "the world would be progressing", it's actually not.

Ho claims she has been allowed to sing publicly in the country before in 2006, however this was before she made an official announcement about her sexuality in 2012.

In Malaysia it is illegal to have gay sex. Anyone found guilty of this 'offence' can be handed a prison sentence of up to 20 years.

They can also be given a fine or be punished by the cane and there are campaigns to stop homosexual and transgender behaviour.

Salleh Said Keruak, Malaysia's communications and multimedia minister, declined to comment on why the popstar's concert was disallowed. However he said anything it approves must be in keeping with "local law and values."

Keruak spoke to the Thomson Reuters Foundation and said: “Malaysia welcomes any artist who projects a wholesome value."

But the singer claims that everyone should have a right to be themselves and "we can be openly gay as someone else can be Christian or Muslim."

The planned concert in April was supposed to be watched by at least 2,000 people.