A black boy whose photo is the centre of a racism outrage involving Swedish fashion powerhouse -H&M- has Kenyan roots, the Nation reports.
The photo, which has since gone viral, shows the black boy modelling for the American fashion house, wearing a green hoodie with “Coolest Monkey in the Jungle” message inscribed across his chest.
Now, a Kenyan woman by the name Terry Mango claims he is the child’s mother while also causing ripples on the websphere in a series of posts, backed H&M, in which she says there was nothing wrong with the message.
In the social media post seen by Zipo.co.ke, the woman identifies herself as a Kenyan who works in Sweden.
“I am the mum and this is one of the hundreds of outfits my son has modelled. Stop crying wolf all the time … Get over it. If I bought the jumper and put it on him and posted it on my pages would that make me racist? I get people’s opinions but they are not mine,” reads one of the posts by Ms Mango.
H&M has since apologised in a statement saying it had taken down the image and that the hoodie has also been removed from its catalogue.
“We would like to put on record our position in relation to the controversial image of our hoodie. Our position is simple, we have got this wrong and we are deeply sorry,” the fashion house said in part.
International superstar singer The Weekend is among known figures that have hit out at H&M. He said in a tweet that he had cancelled any kind of partnership with the firm.
“Woke up this morning shocked and embarrassed by this photo. I’m deeply offended and will not be working with @hm anymore…” the hitmaker noted.
Reports have it that American rap mogul P Diddy has offered the boy a modelling contract worth $1 million (Sh103 million) to work with his clothing line Sean John.
Others are football and basketball stars Romelu Lukaku and Lebron James who took to their respective social media pages to bash H&M.