K-pop star Hyunjin, who is part of the Stray Kids South Korean band has been put on suspension by management in light of the recent school bullying accusations that surfaced, implicating the star.
According to management, the 20-year-old has been put on suspension after he was accused of being a bully while at school. Hyunjin issued an apology after allegations by an unnamed former schoolmate surfaced pinning him for being verbally abusive during his teens.
JYP Entertainment said in a statement on Saturday (Feb 27): “Hyunjin will take the time to self-reflect after halting all of his activities as a celebrity. He sincerely regrets and is self-reflecting on the fact that he hurt various people in middle school with his rough and unsuitable words.
“He has sincerely apologised to those who were hurt and is doing his best so that those people can heal from those wounds.”
On Feb 22, an anonymous poster had accused Hyunjin, 20, of verbal abuse and being violent towards him or her during middle school, when they were in their early teens.
After the unnamed former schoolmate posted about the bullying online, an investigation was undertaken four days later by JYP Entertainment, which included meeting the accuser as well as interviewing others such as former teachers and fellow students, Hyunjin apologised in person.
He also posted a lengthy hand-written apology letter on Instagram.
“First of all, I sincerely apologise to those who were hurt by my improper actions during my school years. Looking back on times when I was more lacking, I am embarrassed and have no excuse,” he wrote.
He added: “Whether it was intended or not, I don’t think I can be forgiven at all for giving unforgettable pain to someone.”
The bullying scandal has picked up a lot of media attention in light of the recent accusations levied against seven other celebrities in South Korea but most have denied the allegations.
Other celebrities who have been accused of bullying in the past week include The Uncanny Counter (2020 to 2021) actor Jo Byung-gyu, girl group (G)I_DLE’s Soojin, boy group Seventeen’s Mingyu, Extracurricular (2020) actor Kim Dong-hee, Monsta X’s Kihyun and former I.O.I member Kim So-hye.
South Korean rapper of Stray Kids band Hyunjin suspended over bullying allegations
The scandal doesn’t stop at musicians only, South Korean sports athletes have also been some of the other celebrities facing the fire. Last month a pair of volleyball superstars and twin sisters were removed from the Korean national team following similar allegations according to BBC.
Bullying has become a nationwide issue in recent weeks since it has been a hot topic of debate that has forced authorities and those responsible to take action.
Some followers online claim that the suspension was harsh and the apology should have been enough given the fact it was something that happened a long time ago. However, others say Hyunjin deserves the punishment and should face the consequences since celebrities are often pardoned when it comes to such issues.
Hyunjin hasn’t been the only celebrity to face the heat as last Friday, Park Hye-soo’s K-drama series Dear.M, which was set to premiere last Friday was postponed after the 26-year-old actress was accused online of bullying middle school classmates, including physically assaulting them and demanding money from them.
Last month, volleyball star twin sisters Lee Jae-yeong and Lee Da-yeong, 24, were banned by the national team after they admitted to abusing teammates a decade ago. At least four of their former middle school teammates had alleged abuse, including punching and being threatened with a knife.
According to a survey by the education ministry, at least one out of every 100 elementary and secondary school students suffered some form of abuse at school in 2019. Hopefully, these recent events encourage more to report such cases and also authorities should become more strict towards bullying in schools.
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Author: Allan Bangirana
Allan Bangirana has a taste for all kinds of topics and usually writes about tech, entertainment, sports and community projects that make a difference in society.