AceShowbiz - A journalist accused by Nicki Minaj of targeting her family has allegedly received death threats. After the Trinidadian-born artist called out Sharlene Rampersad on her social media accounts, Guardian Media has released a statement in defense of the journalist, denouncing "the use of aggression on social media to intimidate."
"Today, in the legitimate pursuit of a story that has both local and international interest, one of our journalists has been subjected to a range of attacks via social media including death threats," so Guardian Media said in the statement released on Friday, September 17. "This is unacceptable and we have taken all measures within our control to ensure her safety and security."
"At Guardian Media Ltd. we denounce intimidation of journalists in any form," it claimed. "Balanced reporting which presents all perspectives is fundamental to the democratic process and we will continue to champion vigorously the freedom of the press."
The Port of Spain-based company added, "The use of aggression on social media to intimidate can have adverse physical and psychological effects on people. As a responsible media house, we encourage others to stand up against this type of behaviour as we can all make a difference in addressing this global challenge posed by the pervasive nature of social media."
Guardian Media made the statement in the wake of Nicki's claims that Sharlene threatened to expose her family's address. "You are the one harassing my family???!!?!???! SPEAK UP B4 I BEGIN. I KNOW YOU SEE THIS!!!!!!" so the "Anaconda" hitmaker wrote in a now-deleted tweet.
Sharing screenshots of Sharlene's alleged messages to her, she also took to her Instagram Story to blast the journalist. "Threatening my family in Trinidad won't bode well for you," the femcee warned Sharlene.
Nicki accused another journalist, James Fielding of Mail Online, of similar conduct. "In Trinidad harassing my family. I didn't want to give details but now I will," she wrote, before adding, "They're forcing my family to have to hide out. This is what speaking up looks like. Millions of poor people are treated this way by the ppl you think are the 'good guys.' This is unconscionable."
The 38-year-old also wrote in a tweet, which has since been deleted, "I was done discussing this s**t. Why are they contacting my family? Control. I kept my mouth shut when the Trinidadian health officials spoke on my name b/c I don't want to do this them. What I know & can say is weighing very heavy on me. #BallGate."
Nicki has come under fire after she shared a story of her cousin's friend in Trinidad and Tobago whose testicles became swollen after receiving the COVID-19 vaccine. Sharlene was among those who slammed the Grammy-nominated artist.
"What @NICKIMINAJ either does not know or does not care about is Trinidad and Tobago is currently under a State of Emergency. Many business sectors are closed and have been for months on end. Vaccination is our way out," the journalist tweeted. "But 60 per cent of our population is unvaccinated. Vaccine hesitancy is high. People are dying and their livelihoods are suffering because of misinformation."
Azealia Banks has also spoken up against Nicki. Taking to her Story, she said, "For as many Black women that have died or have had to have their legs amputated because of black market butt injections…Why do we not have Nicki Minaj questioning that?"
Noting that Nicki once promoted the use of drugs like cocaine and Percocets in her lyrics, which she feels is contradictory to her COVID vaccine stance, Azealia added, "You want to encourage your fans to snort fentanyl laced cocaine, rather than get a vaccine?"
"I've never witnessed this woman be so f**king stupid, and so f**king selfish…," she continued her rant. "Think about the children who are now orphans because their parents caught COVID and died before the vaccine came out."