Nicki Minaj says mass imprisonment in war on drugs is like slavery

Nicki Minaj has said that the mass imprisonment of people under the 'war on drugs' is like slavery.

In a wide-ranging interview with Billboard magazine, the musician was asked about the disproportionate number of non-white people targeted by US drug enforcement policies.

"What it has become is not a war on drugs. It has become slavery. Or something crazier," Minaj said.

"When I see how many people are in jail, I feel like, 'Wait a minute. Our government is aware of these statistics and thinks it's OK?'. The sentences are inhumane.

"I love the president for trying to be a voice for people who no other person has ever tried to be a voice for."

She added that it melted her heart when President Obama visited a prison and spoke to people imprisoned for up to 50 years for drug offences.

Minaj continued: "There are women who are raped, people who are killed and [offenders] don't even serve 20 years. I was blown away, watching the footage of him speaking to the prisoners.

"They never felt like anyone in the White House cared about them. I loved that he made them people again.

"Because we all make mistakes. I think about how many men may have made a mistake to feed their families and then had to pay for it forever."

Back in 2010, Minaj spoke out against the idea that hip-hop artists had to sell drugs to be considered credible artists.

"At one point you had to sell a few kilos to be considered a credible rapper," she told Rolling Stone at the time.

"But now it's like Drake and I are embracing the fact that we went to school, we love acting, we love theatre, and that's okay - and it's especially good for the black community to know that's okay, that's embraced."