Fans now have a bit of insight into health issues that Joel “JoJo” Hailey has been enduring.
Last month, the singer, who is one-half of K-Ci & JoJo, left concert attendees concerned for his well-being when he appeared on stage alongside his brother for a performance of “Lately.”
The audience looked on as the 51-year-old struggled to sing and was unable to stand without assistance. When he became visibly upset and had to be escorted off-stage, questions about him having a serious health issue became the topic of conversation on social media.
However, Sakoya Wynter, his daughter, who appears on “Growing Up Hip Hop,” has set the record straight about the private health matter that played a role in his demeanor at the show. “He’s diabetic; he was just recently diagnosed with diabetes within the past year,” she told Distractify. “And it’s new for him.”
JoJo, who is also a member of 1990s R&B group Jodeci, has been public about his struggles with alcoholism and pancreatic issues. “Ever since Jodeci had their first hit, that’s when everything started spiraling downward,” he told Sister 2 Sister magazine.
“I mean with the whole band, individually and as a group. From then on, I really didn’t have no feelings about it. It was just party and BS. But I didn’t think it was taking a toll on me until the first time that I said I wasn’t going to drink anything, and I fell into a seizure.”
Of her dad, Wynter also had this to say, “A lot of us aren’t as educated as others are when it comes to being diabetic and the steps you have to take to take care of yourself … to stick [yourself] with the needle and all these other things that come with it.” She added that JoJo is still adjusting to life with the illness.
“He’s still trying to figure those things out and just take good care of himself. Sometimes our parents are forgetful, and they don’t do things that they’re supposed to do and you got to kind of call and check in [on them],” said the singer-songwriter.
Some fans suspected that JoJo’s slurred speech may have been caused by a past stroke, but his estranged wife, Tiny Hailey, said that speculation is not rooted in truth. “I just wanted to clarify because people are like, ‘Jojo had a stroke and Tiny left.’ No, Jo has never had a stroke. That’s not what that was,” said Hailey.
Both Wynter and Hailey’s comments confirmed what one fan saw during the performance.
“As someone who was at the concert, they said that his sugar was low. He came back out several times and sat down to sing. They sounded amazing and the show was AMAZING,” the individual wrote online.
Fans were happy to see JoJo on stage, and many wish him the best.