The only original cast member left from Bravo TV’s biggest and longest-lasting show has announced that she will not return for season 13 of RHOA — and may never return if her video announcement was any indication of how somber she was over the decision.
“I have been on an extremely, extremely long, exhausting, tiring, emotional negotiation,” Leakes, 52, began on her YouTube page. “I have made the very hard and difficult decision to be a part of the ‘Real Housewives of Atlanta’ season 13.”
RHOA catapulted Leakes, who was born Linnethia “Nene” Monique Johnson in Queens, New York, to national fame and a considerable fortune. With a reported $14 million stacked up in the bank, Leakes and her husband, Gregg Leakes, and her two children, Bryson Rashard and Brentt Leakes, can afford to step away.
“I’m just so happy that I can say that I was part of a genre that opened up a door for Black ensemble reality shows,” Leakes says. “I want to thank everybody that has looked up to me over the years. I want to thank Bravo for all the memories. Thank you to the cast for all of the memories.”
A Bravo TV spokesperson reportedly told TMZ that the show will fill the large personality void left in the wake of Leakes leaving.
“We wish Nene all the best in her future endeavors and thank her for sharing her journey for over a decade with the fans of ‘The Real Housewives of Atlanta.’ She’s been instrumental since the start and will truly be missed, and maybe one day she’ll hold the peach again.”
Listen to Leakes deliver the sad news to her 122,000 YouTube subscribers.