Yang Dong-hwa dropped from ATBO after bullying accusations
Yang Dong-hwa has been dropped from ATBO, a boy band which will debut later this year, following bullying accusations.
"After the investigations and in-depth discussions with the artist, we have decided that Yang Dong-hwa will not be debuting and will not be part of ATBO," IST Entertainment said in a statement on Tuesday.
The school bullying allegations spread online after he appeared on MBN's survival audition program “The Origin - A, B, Or What?”
The program aired from March 19 to May 7 and was a joint project by MBN and Kakao TV. The seven finalists were Jeong Seung-hwan, Oh Jun-seok, Seok Rak-won, Ryu Jun-min, Bae Hyun-jun, Yang Dong-hwa and Kim Yeon-kyu. They were to be the seven members of ATBO.
"We checked the posts about Yang Dong-hwa online, and with the consent of the artist, got in touch with staff at his school and his friends," IST said. "During this process, we found that there were instances when Yang Dong-hwa acted immaturely and hurt his classmates with inappropriate language.
"We were able to get in contact with some of those people and sit down with them. At this time, Yang Dong-hwa sincerely apologized to these people. Currently, Yang Dong-hwa is regretting his past acts that were inappropriate for a minor and how he hurt people around him. We apologize sincerely to all those who felt hurt and discomforted by Yang Dong-hwa's previous actions and also to the fans who supported the artist."
BY LEE JIAN [firstname.lastname@example.org]