Iyanla Vanzant Says 'Jail Is Not The Answer' For R. Kelly And Reveals She Turned Him Down For 'Fix My Life'

Iyanla Vanzant Says 'Jail Is Not The Answer' For R. Kelly And Reveals She Turned Him Down For 'Fix My Life'

She shared a few surprising tidbits in a recent interview.

Published January 14th

Prior to the airing of the viral Lifetime docu-series Surviving R. Kelly, the R&B star could have been the celebrity subject on the hit OWN series Fix My Life.

The show's host, Iyanla Vanzant, recently did an interview detailing why she, however, declined Kelly's offer to be on the show and, specifically, why she does not think jail is the best option for him regarding his reported history of sexual assault.

In an interview with ABC News, Vanzant shared some exclusive details about an interaction she had with the singer ahead of the season six premiere of Fix My Life. She specifically shared that he reached out to her long before the premiere of the now-virally received and viewed docu-series, but she declined him for one direct reason.

"He didn't meet one of the criteria that we had for guests," she said. "Are they willing? Are they ready? Do they have the capacity to do the work? He didn't have it, the emotional capacity. He just didn't have it, and I knew, based on what I was looking at — the paces I would have had to take him through — it would have been brutal. He didn't have the capacity because he hasn't done the work."

Vanzant, who is a survivor of sexual assault herself, went on to stress that the disgraced singer would have had to willingly admit fault to the things he's done in order to successfully move on in the healing process — something she claims he was unable to do.

Furthermore, she added that, despite it all, prison is not the answer when it comes to efficiently dealing with the documented alleged sexual predator.

"I would never, ever condone or justify anything that he's been accused of doing," she continued. "But locking him up in jail is not the answer... He's sick... Just like the people he allegedly committed these acts with — they're sick. This needs to be massive healing — them, him, all of them."

As previously reported, the singer is currently under investigation for his various alleged acts of sexual abuse, and despite Vanzant's hesitance of having him incarcerated, she voiced that she does believe a major investigation of some sort needs to be conducted.

"I do know, without some long-term investigation, he doesn't have the capacity," she said. "Just wouldn't be able to hear it, receive it. Classic thing is that he's not telling the truth about it."

Written by Moriba Cummings

(Photos from left: Paras Griffin/Getty Images for Essence, Michael Loccisano/Getty Images)

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