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R. Kelly banned from Philadelphia

Tatyana Jenene

 // Feb 2, 2019

Artist // Instagram

The fallout from Lifetime's "Surviving R. Kelly" docuseries has continued as the city of Philadelphia has passed a bill which symbolically bans disgraced singer R. Kelly from ever visiting.

On Thursday (Jan. 31), the Philadelphia City Council unanimously voted yes to the "Mute R. Kelly" resolution, introduced by Councilwoman Helen Gym. While the Chicago singer won't be arrested or removed if seen in the City of Brotherly Love, Gym says the bill is "a public declaration" meant to send a message of support to survivors and condemn sexual abuse. "I believe that R. Kelly and predators like him should be shamed and banished from the public sphere," Gym said in a statement to Philadelphia Inquirer.

"We reject a system that silences black women and accepts black pain," Gym tweeted after the bill was approved. "We believe survivors. R. Kelly is not welcome in Philadelphia. This symbolic act of solidarity puts all sexual predators on notice."

Since the "Surviving R. Kelly" docuseries debuted on Jan. 3, the #MuteRKelly movement has gained momentum since its debut on social media in April 2018. Although Kelly's streams surged the week of the premiere, radio stations across the country have banned his music, while artists like Lady Gaga, Chance the Rapper, Ciara and Post Malone have pulled their collabs with him off of all streaming services.

The "I Believe I Can Fly" singer was recently dropped by RCA Records after #MuteRKelly protest took place in front of Sony Headquarters in New York City, and the FBI is currently investigating singer for violation of the federal Mann Act.

According to TMZ, the FBI is looking into claims that of Kelly transported the alleged victim, Azriel Clary, from Palm Springs to Phoenix to Orlando for the purpose of sex in 2015. If proved true, Kelly would be in violation of US federal law's Mann Act, because Clary was 17 at the time when she crossed state lines. If charged, Kelly faces up to 10 years in prison.

R. Kelly has always denied the allegations against him. In a recent statement via his lawyer to the Associated Press the singer claims "he never knowingly had sex with an underage woman, he never forced anyone to do anything, he never held anyone captive, he never abused anyone."

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