Teen pop sensation Justin Bieber was forced to miss out on attending his first BET Awards show on Sunday due to his tour commitments - because he never expected to be nominated at the ceremony.
The Baby hit-maker was a surprise nominee in the Best New Artist category when the competitors were announced in May, sparking controversy with some critics questioning his eligibility to be considered for the Black Entertainment Television honors. Rap mogul Sean 'Diddy' Combs rushed to the teenager's defense, insisting skin color should be no bar to success, but Bieber's concert schedule had already been put in place and the singer was unable to change his plans to accommodate the annual prize giving.
Explaining his absence at the 2010 BET Awards on the morning of the show, Bieber wrote on his Twitter.com page, "Rolled into Milwaukee for the show today... gonna be huge... 22,000 people sold out I heard. Missing everybody out in LA for the BET awards. Just wanted to say I would have been at the awards but this show was booked before the nominees came out, and I don't cancel shows... I would never cancel a show and let down the fans unless I had to...but I do wish I was there too, because I am honored to just be nominated."
"Why did we not plan for the BET Awards?? Well (to be) honest people, not many of u (sic) thought the white boy from Canada was gonna b (sic) nominated. But... just goes to show that Music is COLOUR BLIND!! It is the Universal Language and good music brings us all together... the way it should be. So thank u (sic) to BET and good luck to all the nominees 2nite (sic)... I'm honored and grateful and let's keep enjoying this music 2gether (sic)!! thanks."
Bieber lost out on the Best New Artist title to Nicki Minaj.