ENHYPEN’s Japanese member Ni-ki apologizes after saying he was jealous of fan getting March 1st Movement Day off

ENHYPEN member Ni-ki, who is Japanese, has been under severe fire from Korean netizens recently after telling a fan he was jealous that they got March 1st Movement Day off.

On January 29, 2024, Ni-ki originally uploaded an encouraging message for fans. As it was a Friday the next day, he told fans to hang in there a little longer. He accompanied a photo of the night sky with the caption “as long as you hang in there for tomorrow, it’ll be the weekend…hwaiting Engene. Heh.”

Fan: Yeah, tomorrow is independence Movement Day, so we’re resting.
Ni-ki: I’m jealous heh.

Of course, that day exists because Korea had to fight Japan for said independence, and as other idols have found out in the past, the public is understandably sensitive to historical issues such as that. It’s a combination of him being Japanese, seemingly being ignorant about it, and also being jokey about it that’s leading to backlash.

After the issue spread, Ni-ki released a short apology.

“Hello. This is Ni-ki. I apologize for my careless expression regarding the March 1st Independence Movement Day, an important day of national commemoration. I have realized my mistake and immediately deleted the said post. I will be more careful in the future.”

That didn’t really help and not only is he being criticized for his ignorance, but so is HYBE for not training them correctly and what not.


For me, it’s mostly a stupid mistake to not be aware and reflects on his ignorance, especially since he’s already been at it for a few years now. And I agree it’s partially on HYBE for not making sure that a Japanese member in Korea isn’t educated on at least the biggest events in history like this. Is it malicious? I don’t think anybody would conclude that unless there’s history, but it’s just a completely avoidable thing.

With other history issues where the mistake isn’t malicious, I’ve mostly “defended” those who have made ignorant mistakes, like Tiffany or Seolhyun or Jimin, just because the intense backlash seems more like gleeful dogpiling or public flogging than anything where people care about improving things. And I never feel like they should lose their careers over something like that, so the same applies to this.

That said, I will also say it’s weird to see international netizens downplay stuff like this while they get pissed that K-pop idols who have been in a training room since like 12 or whatever don’t know every controversial landmine to avoid globally. It’s literally the same kind of faux pas, and at the very minimum somebody should’ve helped him craft a better apology for it so people could begin to move on.


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Thot Leader™