Reggae Star Cancels Performance after Contracting Zika Virus

Grammy-winning reggae star Beenie Man says he was forced to drop out of a scheduled performance Saturday night at Toronto’s annual OVO Fest when the Canadian government denied his visa request after he contracted the Zika virus.

“No visa fi mi Canada show,” the Jamaican singer wrote on his Instagram account Saturday.

“I apologize again to my fans in case you haven’t seen the press release. The same Zika mosquito gi mi dengue. Blood test, injections, pills. Wi a hol firm still,” Beenie Man wrote.

The Instagram post featured a photo of the Grammy award-winning singer lying in a bed undergoing blood tests.

Ticketmaster Entertainment, Inc. released a statement confirming the news.

“Due to immigration issues Beenie Man will no longer be able to perform as part of OVO Fest 2016 on Saturday July 30th at TD Echo Beach in Toronto,” the company wrote to concertgoers. “In his place we have booked a slew of surprise special guests and of course Machel Montano will still headline as planned, with special guests of his own.”

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, 234 pregnant women in the U.S. tested positive for Zika in 2016. The largely mosquito-borne virus can be contracted through sexual contact with an infected person. Those infected with Zika virus typically experience symptoms including mild fever, skin rash, muscle and joint pain, and headache. These symptoms can last up to a week.

The news of Beenie Man’s diagnoses came one day after Florida officials confirmed three men and one woman were infected with the Zika Virus.

“Florida has become the first state in our nation to have local transmission of the Zika virus,” Governor Rick Scott announced Friday.

 

Follow Jerome Hudson on Twitter: @jeromeehudson


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