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Ja Rule Responds to Fyre Festival Backlash: 'This Is Not My Fault'

by Jennifer Drysdale 5:00 PM PDT, April 28, 2017
Photo: Getty Images

Ja Rule is "deeply sorry" for those inconvenienced by his Fyre Festival, but also says "it's not my fault."

The rapper, who was an early backer of the "luxury" festival in Great Exuma, Bahamas, took to Twitter on Friday to express his heartbreak over the situation.

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"We are working right now on getting everyone out of the island SAFE that is my immediate concern," he wrote, declaring that the event was "not a scam." "I don't know how everything went so left but I'm working to make it right by making sure everyone is refunded."

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Hundreds of festival-goers, who paid between $1,000 and $125,000 for tickets, and were promised gourmet food and accommodations, were left stranded on the island after arriving to an unfinished site, underwhelming accommodations and a lack of food and staffing. The festival's closing headliner, Blink-182, canceled its performance on Thursday, citing sub-par production standards. Migos and Major Lazer were also expected to perform.

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Fyre organizers announced on their website early Friday morning that the three-day, two-weekend event was being postponed indefinitely, and that guests were being sent home.

"Due to circumstances out of our control, the physical infrastructure was not in place on time and we are unable to fulfill on that vision safely and enjoyably for our guests,” reads a statement from festival organizers. "The festival is being postponed until we can further assess if and when we are able to create the high-quality experience we envisioned."

Officials with the Bahamian Ministry of Tourism, meanwhile, blamed Fyre's organizers for the disaster.

"The event organizers assured us that all measures were taken to ensure a safe and successful event but clearly they did not have the capacity to execute an event of this scale," the statement reads. "A team of Ministry of Tourism representatives is on the island to assist with the organization of a safe return of all Fyre Festival visitors. It is our hope that the Fyre Festival visitors would consider returning to the Islands Of The Bahamas in the future to truly experience all of our beauty."

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Billy McFarland, the 25-year-old Fyre Festival co-founder with Ja Rule, told Rolling Stone that he and the organizers realized the morning of the festival that, "Wow, we can't do this." 

"We were a little naïve in thinking for the first time we could do this ourselves," McFarland said, adding that festival-goers will be refunded. "Next year, we will definitely start earlier. The reality is, we weren't experienced enough to keep up."

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