R. Kelly’s estranged daughter, Buku Abi has broken her silence in regards to her father and the national news coverage surrounding Lifetime’s Suvrviving R. Kelly and the numerous allegations of sexual abuse brought against him. Buku shared a lengthy message on social media on Thursday (Jan. 10), addressing the reports and explaining why she has not spoken out in the past.
In her message, Buku – also known as Joann Lee Kelly – apologized for being silent and expressed sympathy for the countless victims and families affected by her father’s behavior. “I just want you all to understand that devastated is an understatement for all that I feel currently,” she wrote. “I do apologize if my silence to all that is happening comes off as careless. That is my Last intention. I pray for all the families & women who have been affected by my father’s action. Trust, I have been deeply affected by all of this. It has been very difficult to process it all. Let alone gather all the right words to express everything I feel.”
She also confirmed that neither she nor her siblings or mother Andrea Kelly have spoken or interacted with R. Kelly in years. “Unfortunately, for my own personal reasonings & for all my family has endured in regards to him, and his life decisions, and his last name, it has been years since my siblings and I have seen and or have spoken to him,” she continued.
Towards the end of her lengthy response, Buku seemed to acknowledge that her father was a “monster” and that she too experienced him in a negative manner while living with him years ago. She also asked that fans and supporters respect her family during this difficult time.
“I would never want anyone to feel the pain I have felt. Reminders of how terrible my father is and how we should be speaking up against him, rude comments about my family, fabricating me, my siblings & our mothers ‘part’ etc. Does not help my family in our haling process. Nor does it allow a safe space for other victims who are scared to speak up, speak up,” she added. “The same monster you all confronting me about is my father. I am well aware of who and what he is. I grew up in that house. My choice to not speak on him and what he does is for peace of mind. My emotional state. and for MY healing. I have to do & move in a manner that is best for me.”
Buku is one of three children by Andrea and R. Kelly. Kelly is currently under criminal investigation in Georgia. Read her full statement below.