Nicki Minaj fans hit out at last-minute gig cancellation after Amsterdam arrest

Nicki Minaj fans were left fuming after the US rapper’s gig in Manchester was postponed at the last minute, following her arrest at Schiphol Airport in Amsterdam.

Minaj, 41, was arrested on suspicion of exporting soft drugs before she was fined and permitted to continue on her journey, Dutch police said.

In a video livestreamed to her followers, Minaj revealed she had pre-rolled joints in her bag that she said belonged to someone else.

“Keep in mind they took my bags without consent. My security has already advised them those pre-rolls belong to him,” she wrote on X. “Oh yea and the pilot wants me to take my [Instagram] post down.”

The “Anaconda” star was unable to make it to Manchester in time for her concert at the embattled Co-op Live arena, where 20,000 fans were waiting for her to take to the stage.

Fans were let into the arena at 7pm BST and remained hopeful the gig would take place until 9.30pm, when boos erupted around the venue as fans were informed that it had been postponed and asked to leave the area.

“I spent £150 for my ticket and booked a day off work for it, and we sat there for about three hours waiting and we got told it’s not happening,” Imogen Pope, 18, told the BBC.

Nicki Minaj fans were gutted after the rapper’s show was postponed (AP)
Nicki Minaj fans were gutted after the rapper’s show was postponed (AP)

Ellis Day, 17, from Cheshire, said he was “devastated” about the postponement.

“We’ve come here, we spent all day getting ready, to see this happen,” he said. “It’s just really disappointing when we’ve got our hopes up and spent the money, and we get told at the very last minute that she’s not going to show up.”

Some fans criticised the Co-op Live organisers, with one fan writing on X/Twitter: “Co-op Live you are a f***ing joke. You knew hours ago that the show wouldn’t go ahead yet you still allowed everyone to come and spend money at your venue to then cancel last minute. Absolute joke.”

In a video, another fan, Aaron Drohan, called out the venue for “getting us to stand around” having bought food, drink and merchandise, only to postpone the event.

“F*** you, Co-op Live,” he said, revealing that he flew in from Ireland to see the show.

Minaj invited her fans, known as Barbz, to her hotel in the centre of the city after she arrived, having missed the gig, and according to videos on social media she then spoke to the crowds outside.

She told them: “I wanted to honestly tell you that I love you.”

On X, she wrote the venue was “willing to go past 11pm”, and she pointed the finger at unidentified figures who she said had “succeeded at their plan to not let me get on that stage tonight”.

She said a new date for the show would be announced on Sunday.

She wrote: “One July option and one June option is currently being discussed. I’ll find a way to not only make up the date with the performance but I’m going to create an added bonus for everyone that had a (ticket) for this show. Promise.”

Nicki Minaj did not perform in Manchester as scheduled on Saturday night (Ian West/PA) (PA Archive)
Nicki Minaj did not perform in Manchester as scheduled on Saturday night (Ian West/PA) (PA Archive)

Minaj said she will continue with her other scheduled shows, including in Birmingham on Sunday and a second night at the Co-op Live Arena on Thursday.

A statement from Live Nation said on Saturday: “Despite Nicki’s best efforts to explore every possible avenue to make tonight’s show happen, the events of today have made it impossible.

“We are deeply disappointed by the inconvenience this has caused.”

Minaj’s arrest and postponed show is the latest issue to plague the Co-op Live arena, which was finally able to open last week after over a month of delays.

Additional reporting by Associated Press