Silentó has had a crazy couple of years following the success of his 2015 single, “Watch Me (Whip/Nae Nae).”
Now, the teen rapper is dealing with some real life drama. According to the NWI Times, Silento was ordered by a United Arab Emirates court to pay $85,000 to local promoter Abdel Halim after allegedly skipping out on two scheduled shows.
Halim says the rapper didn’t show up and he’s hoping to recoup his lost expenses, which include performance fees and travel costs. He revealed, “After we reached an agreement and the contracts were signed, Silento did not show up at Bounce Abu Dhabi and Al Ain Rotana for the events. Furthermore, I was asked to cover costs of travel and accommodation. The contract stated that the payment of 50 per cent is due, but I was again asked to pay extra and more payments were made.”
Silentó was reportedly scheduled to perform in both Al Ain and Abu Dhabi in mid-February, although the rapper’s legal rep, Jenna Kadhum, says he did not cancel any shows at all, he just wasn’t paid so he didn’t show up. She told reporters, “We did not know that a ban was issued until today. There was no contract between myself and Mackie Entertainment. The contract was with another company, which put my name and logo in the documents, and I did not sign any document.”
As a result of the 85K owed, a travel ban was placed on the 19-year-old, and a judge has ordered him to surrender his passport to the court until the matter is resolved. However, Kadhum, who claims Silentó missed the concerts because he had not received his fee, is planning her own legal action and has contacted the US embassy in Abu Dhabi on the rapper’s behalf.
A GoFundMe was created to get by a Georgia native to get Silentó back to the states. The goal of the campaign is to raise at least $100K for the stranded rapper. This isn’t the first time that an American artist has been banned from leaving the UAE. Back in 2014, DJ Esco spent 56 days in a Dubai jail after being caught with marijuana while at the Abu Dhabi airport.
Hence the name of his popular mixtape with Future. The U.S. Embassy in Abu Dhabi declined to comment on Silentó’s situation.