Jacko denies awards snub

Michael Jackson has blasted claims he was too busy to appear at the Black Entertainment Television (BET) awards, branding the allegations "false and defamatory".

The singer was asked to appear at the BET ceremony in Los Angeles on June 26 to perform a special 'Thriller' album tribute and to present his mentor Diana Ross with a Lifetime Achievement Award - but American news agencies claimed Jackson was "too incapacitated to appear".

Jackson's spokeswoman Raymone K. Bain says the information "being disseminated in the media with regards to Mr. Jackson's invitation is false. We cannot understand why anyone affiliated with the program would deliberately misrepresent the facts or attempt to defame Mr. Jackson.

"Mr. Jackson spoke personally to BET CEO Debra Lee regarding his invitation to attend the ceremony. Mr. Jackson respects BET and was one of the first recording artists to demand that his record company cooperate with, at the time, a newly established network."

Most Read in Showbiz