John Legend Protests Sultan of Brunei

John Legend Protests Sultan of Brunei

“All of Me” singer is the latest celeb to join the hotel boycott.

Published February 4, 2015

John Legend won’t be attending a party in his honor, out of protest against the Sultan of Brunei.

The leader of South Asian country, Sultan Haji Hassanal Bolkiah, has been the center of boycotts for inflicting anti-gay legislation that infringe on human rights. 

Legend canceled an appearance at Los Angeles Confidential's pre-Grammy soirée this week because the event will be held at the Sultan-owned Beverly Hills Hotel. The “All of Me” singer, who is up for a Grammy and an Oscar this year, covers the magazine’s Dec. 2014/Jan. 2015 issue.

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A rep for Legend confirmed that he pulled out “in light of the horrific anti-women and anti-LGBT policies approved by the hotel's owner, the Sultan of Brunei.” In May 2014, Brunei passed a law punishing homosexuality and adultery with death by stoning. 

These policies, which among other things could permit women and LGBT Bruneians to be stoned to death, are heinous and certainly don't represent John's values or the spirit of the event,” the rep said. “John does not, in any way, wish to further enrich the Sultan while he continues to enforce these brutal laws."

The magazine doesn’t intend to move the party but said that the location “in no way suggests that we support any anti-human rights policies." 

Legend is the latests of several celebrities to enter Hollywood’s Sultan boycott. Last year Babyface moved his wedding from the Bel-Air Hotel, which is also owned through Sultan Bolkiah's Dorechester Collection. 

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(Photo: Ethan Miller/Getty Images for DirecTV)

Written by Latifah Muhammad

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