ROME (Reuters) – The lead singer of Italy’s glam rock band Maneskin, which won this year’s Eurovision song contest, has passed a drugs test proving he did not take drugs at the weekend event, the organisers said on Monday.
The European Broadcasting Union (EBU) said it had conducted a thorough review of what happened on Saturday after some viewers thought footage showed Damiano David snorting cocaine as he waited for the winner to be announced.
He denied it and said he had merely been clearing away a broken glass under the table. Speaking to reporters on Sunday he said he was against drugs and offered to do a drugs test.
EBU said this had returned a negative result.
“No drug use took place in the Green Room and we consider the matter closed,” EBU said in a statement.
“We are alarmed that inaccurate speculation leading to fake news has overshadowed the spirit and the outcome of the event and unfairly affected the band,” it added.
The Italians’ raucous hit “Zitti E Buoni” beat out professional jury favourites Switzerland and France and swept the public vote at Saturday’s competition, which accounted for half the points.
“We wish to congratulate Maneskin once again and wish them huge success,” EBU said.
(Writing by Crispian Balmer; Editing by Alistair Bell)