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K'naan ditches SFU show

Canadian-Somali poet and musician K’naan waited in his limo and refusedto take the stage at a charity concert Tuesday night at Simon FraserUniversity after last-minute negotiations broke down between organizersand his agent.

Canadian-Somali poet and musician K’naan waited in his limo and refused to take the stage at a charity concert Tuesday night at Simon Fraser University after last-minute negotiations broke down between organizers and his agent.

The event, a Peace Day concert, was to raise scholarship money for girls in rural Ghana. Organizers, I Vision One World, a SFU club, refused comment. A post on their website blamed “unfortunate circumstances” as the reason the headliner was not able to perform.

K’naan blasted the event across social media.

“The student union, whom I trust meant well ... have been taken for a ride by a charitable sub group. In response, the students are angry,” Tweeted the artist, whose song Wavin’ Flag was the theme of the 2010 FIFA World Cup.

Both SFU and the Simon Fraser Student Society provided I Vision World One with an undisclosed amount of bridge funding for the concert, but were not otherwise involved. The money was to be repaid from ticket sales.

Clement Apaak, a SFU alum whose charity Direct Assistance Network was to receive partial proceeds from the concert, said he learned of the cancellation just before he was to introduce K’naan to the crowd.

“In many ways it was a very big disappointment because there were a lot of students hoping to see K’Naan perform … it’s amazing that nothing got out of control because it was very volatile and anything could have happened.”

Apaak said he didn’t know the reason why K’naan didn’t take the stage, but had heard that it was because of payment.

 
 
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