R. Kelly’s alleged victims used their platform at the MTV Movies & TV Awards to share a special message.
The “I Believe I Can Fly” hitmaker has been charged with multiple counts of aggravated sexual abuse in the wake of the Surviving R. Kelly docuseries and three of the women who appeared on the program admitted they didn’t expect the response, which has also seen other accusers come forward.
They are grateful to have finally been “taken seriously.”
Lisa Van Allen said: “When we sat down, we didn’t think any of this would happen. We just really prayed and hoped that our voices would be heard and that the industry and the world would listen up.”
Lizzette Martinez added: “For us to finally be recognized and be taken seriously and for people to listen, it’s a great thing. I just want him to be held accountable.”
And the alleged victims hope other accusers will continue to come forward and not feel like they have to stay “silent” any longer.
Speaking on the red carpet at the MTV Movie & TV Awards, Asante McGee spoke to “Entertainment Tonight” and offered: “It’s been liberating to know how many people we’ve touched and how many victims have come forward because of the docu-series and just knowing that justice will soon be served.
“I just want all of his victims to continue coming forward, do not be silent. And, for me, it’s not just about R. Kelly. It’s about victims that are being victimized by everyday people. So I just want everybody to be able to come forward and I just want to be the voice for the voices.”
The program received the award for “Best Documentary” at the ceremony, which took place at the Barker Hangar in Santa Monica, and a number of survivors appeared on stage to accept the prize alongside the production team.
Brie Miranda Bryant, Senior Vice President of unscripted development and programming for Lifetime, said in a moving statement: “This isn’t just a trophy to us. It speaks to the cultural impact that it generated from this documentary.
“This team believes in the power of numbers. Fifty-four individuals sat to tell this story… entire production teams assembled their shields to tell this story… survivors walked through the fire and stood again to tell the story… journalists, activists, bloggers, tweeters who continued to say the name of these survivors, these parents, helped to tell this story… thank you, especially to those individuals who never wavered despite how daunting this journey has been.
“To our survivors and parents, we know the journey doesn’t start or stop with this journey but the world is listening now.
“Because of your bravery, others are speaking without shame and being heard without judgment. Because of your courage, you created change and you survived.”
Kelly has denied all the allegations against him.