By Cho Jae-hyon
The popular boy band 2PM is moving on. However, fans of the band will have to see the group perform without its former leader Jae-beom, as its management agency chief reiterated his position against reinstating him.
Park Jin-young, the head of JYP Entertainment, posted a second statement on his Web site Thursday on escalating disputes surrounding Jae-beom's quitting after controversial negative comments he made about Korea four years ago became public.
``Jae-beom still believes that he did something wrong though many people are supporting him,'' Park said.
Park quoted the former leader as saying that he cannot take the stage as he's still sorry and still ashamed of himself.
Park said 2PM will resume its activities with the other six members as scheduled. He quoted Jae-beom as saying: ``I hope the remaining six members will not stop activities as they have done their best. I quit 2PM so quickly in order (not to stand in the way of their activities).''
However, Park indicated that the former leader would return to his fans in the future.
``The talent Jae-beom has built over the last four years still remains in himself. He could soar higher if he would take this as an opportunity to mature further as a human-being,'' the manager said.
Park said he will respect his decision and will help him resume activities when a right time comes.
``I think my role for now is to respect his decision to leave the stage and leave him to have a time of his own. If he would say, in the future, that he would like to get onstage again, then I will do my best to help him,'' Park said.
JYP expressed his regret to his fans for the controversy. ``I apologize for failing to protect and more carefully manage our members. I promise that I will do the utmost to prevent a recurrence of this incident.''
Jae-beom was the center of netizen outrage over comments he made about Korea to a friend on the social networking site MySpace between 2005 and 2007. Jae-beom, who was then a trainee at JYP Entertainment, wrote, ``Korea is gay. I hate Koreans. I wanna come back,'' referring to America, the place he grew up.
Jae-beom is reportedly contracted to exclusively work for JYP until 2012.