Michael Jackson accuser Wade Robson is questioning MTV over their decision to keep Jackson’s name on their lifetime achievement award, even after the singer has been hit with child sexual abuse allegations.
“I don’t personally need MTV to do one thing or the other, but as child abuse survivors all over the world watch to see whether society will support them or not if they have the courage to come forward, in that regard, it’s an unfortunate choice,” Robson said in an interview with TheWrap.
The Video Vanguard Award has been a part of the VMAs ceremony since 1984. It was named in Jackson’s honour in 1991, two years before child molestation charges began to follow the singer.
This year’s recipient is Missy Elliott. While they clearly decided to keep the name on the award for this year’s awards show, reports from inside MTV pointed toward the idea of removing Jackson’s name from the honour.
“There’s a lot of heated discussion at the network about how to handle the Michael Jackson Video Vanguard Award this year, and it’s getting ugly,” an anonymous source told Maybach Media. There’s talk about if they should change the name, or get rid of it altogether. [There’s also talk] about who would present it and who would accept it. It’s a mess.”
The discussion came after Leaving Neverland resurfaced allegations against Jackson.
“MTV [potentially] banning his name is the latest fallout,” the source said. “They haven’t decided yet, but they’ve been going back and forth on it. There are a lot of issues.”