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Michael Jackson not going to Africa after all

A spokesman for the besieged pop singer says a travel company's claims that Jackson is going to Namibia are 'misrepresentations and misinformation.'
/ Source: Reuters

Pop singer Michael Jackson will not be traveling to the southern African nation of Namibia this weekend as had been expected by officials there.

Jackson spokeswoman Raymone Bain said a travel company that was identified as having contacted Namibian President Sam Nujoma to arrange for a Jackson visit had acted without the singer’s permission.

“I guess we will do our due diligence to look into how this happened,” Bain said. “These things do happen quite often. There are a lot of misrepresentations and misinformation.”

The singer has had his passport confiscated and is not allowed out of the United States while he faces charges in Santa Barbara, Calif., of committing lewd acts on a child under the age of 14 and of plying the boy with alcohol in order to seduce him.

In addition, a grand jury has been meeting in Santa Barbara to consider an indictment on similar charges against the self-proclaimed “King of Pop.”

The travel company was identified on several Web sites as Adventure in Africa Tours based in St. Louis, Missouri, but checks with St. Louis phone directories and other local business listings failed to turn up any travel agencies by that name.

Jackson, who has helped build hospitals and schools in Africa and develop child immunization programs there, spoke in Washington last month about his desire to return to Africa later this year.

In a grand jury hearing in Santa Barbara on Friday, Presiding Superior Court Judge Clifford Anderson told prosecutors to stop prohibiting witnesses from talking to defense attorneys.

Anderson said the witnesses are only prohibited from sharing their testimony with the grand jury.

Discussions about whether Jackson’s former private investigator can be compelled to testify were closed to the public.

The grand jury is scheduled to resume hearing testimony Monday.