It's only been a few months since she gave birth to her first baby, but Nicki Minaj is dealing with some tragic news today.
The 'Starships' singer's father Robert Maraj has reportedly been killed by a hit-and-run driver in New York.
The incident happened on Friday night, when the 64-year-old was walking along a road in Long Island, New York. The driver left the scene and Maraj was pronounced dead in hospital the following day. A spokesperson from Nassau County Police Department confirmed that Robert was the rapper's father.
Minaj, whose real name is Onika Tanya Maraj-Petty, has yet to comment publicly, but has not spoken positively about her father in the past; in 2010, she told Rolling Stone that he once set fire to the family home while her mother was still inside. "I remember when my mother would let my father be violent with her and she always brings up this story about when I was a little girl and I would stand in front of my mother,” she later said in her 2018 documentary 'Queen'. “That’s why maybe some people would describe me as abrasive or bitchy or whatever because I vowed from that age no man would ever abuse me, call me out my name, treat me like that. Then all of a sudden, that was my life.”
Minaj announced her retirement in 2019, but has continued to release music sporadically since then - the most recent being a feature on Mike Will Made It's 'What That Speed Bout!?' last November. Her song 'Trollz' with controversial rapper 6ix9ine topped the Billboard chart last year.
This is not the first family tragedy that Minaj has endured, either: in 2011, her cousin Nicholas Telemaque was murdered in Brooklyn.
Her brother Jelani, meanwhile, is currently serving 25 years in prison after being convicted of convicted of predatory sexual assault against a child and endangering the welfare of a child in 2017, and her husband Kenneth Petty has a conviction for attempted rape from 1995 and has also served time in prison for both that charge and for manslaughter.