Nicki Minaj says sorry to fans as Manchester gig cancelled after arrest | Nicki Minaj

Nicki Minaj has offered her “deepest and most sincere apologies” after her Manchester concert was cancelled at the last minute as she was arrested in Amsterdam.

The US rapper was detained for hours at Schiphol airport on suspicion of “possessing soft drugs” before being fined by Dutch police and allowed to continue her journey.

Her show at Co-op Live was abandoned at 9.30pm, when Minaj was due on stage. About 20,000 fans were inside the venue, the UK’s biggest indoor arena, when they were told the concert had been called off.

There were boos from the crowd and some concertgoers said they felt “disgusted” and felt “betrayed” by the 41-year-old star.

Fans leave the Manchester Co-op Live venue after the Nicki Minaj show was cancelled on Saturday night. Photograph: Temilade Adelaja/Reuters

“I feel appalled. But also, in a way, I’m not shocked,” said Olivia Gibson, 21, who had travelled from Newcastle for the gig. “And it’s not the Co-op Live’s fault. She’s just let all her fans down.”

Minaj said on social media she was in a jail cell for five to six hours and finally arrived at her hotel in Manchester at about midnight.

“They succeeded at their plan to not let me get on that stage tonight,” she wrote on X, without saying who she was referring to. “Please please please accept my deepest & most sincere apologies. They sure did know exactly how to hurt me today but this too, shall pass.

“They’ve been doing this over & over & over & over & over again & I’ve tried so hard to not discuss it b/c [because] you guys deserve to just get the good stuff. I hate involving you in anything that isn’t for entertainment purposes only.”

She said she hoped to announce a rescheduled date on Sunday, promising an “added bonus” for those who had bought a ticket.

Minaj went on to meet fans – who call themselves Barbz – outside the Stock Exchange hotel in Manchester shortly before 2am on Sunday.

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“I love you … and I’m so sorry,” she told those gathered, according to footage shared on social media.

Co-op Live, which has endured a series of setbacks since opening in April, said it was “deeply disappointed” at the inconvenience caused by the latest cancellation, which came two-and-a-half hours after ticket-holders had entered the arena.

The venue said: “Tickets will remain valid for the rescheduled performance which will be announced ASAP. Despite Nicki’s best efforts to explore every possible avenue to make tonight’s show happen, the events of today have made it impossible.”

Minaj is due to perform in Birmingham on Sunday night before returning to Manchester on Thursday.

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