LITTLE Mix singer Jesy Nelson is taking time away from the girlband, it has been revealed.
Following the 29-year-old singer's sudden disappearance from the finale of their BBC1 talent show The Search, her management released a statement tonight confirming the hiatus.
Jesy has been a member of the group since they formed on The X Factor in 2011, alongside bandmates Perrie Edwards, Leigh-Anne Pinnock and Jade Thirlwall.
Together they have sold more than 50million records, landing two Brit Awards, four number one singles and releasing six albums along the way.
But Jesy will step back with immediate effect, with a spokesman for the group telling The Sun: “Jesy is having extended time off from Little Mix for private medical reasons.
"We will not be issuing any further comment currently and ask media to please respect her privacy at this time."
It comes after she previously confirmed she would miss the band’s most recent high profile appearances two weeks ago at the EMAs.
At the time a spokesman said: “Jesy is unwell and will not be appearing on tonight’s final of Little Mix: The Search.
“She will also not be hosting or performing at tomorrow’s MTV EMAs.”
Little Mix recently announced they are scheduled to hit the road on tour again in April next year, though it’s thought the dates may be delayed if necessary as a result of ongoing Covid-19 restrictions.
But the group have also faced strain after a well-documented fall out with their former record label, Simon Cowell’s SyCo Music in November 2018 – which saw them move to rival record RCA amid a bust-up between Cowell and the band’s management company, Modest Management.
After the incident, which erupted as they made their LM5 album, Simon told The Sun the dispute “wasn’t down to money” and added: "Basically, they said we'd done a terrible job.
"I had agreed not to talk about this publicly because I thought it was a private matter.
"I said 'We can't work with the management, it's as simple as that'."
But The X Factor judge said he's still on good terms with Jade, Perrie, Jesy and Leigh-Anne and has planned to meet up with them.
He said he's never fallen out with the band, adding: "As I said in my email to them, I stand by the fact they are the hardest working bunch of girls I've ever worked with. They deserve everything they've got."
The girls later told The Sun a change was “always good,” with Perrie adding: “We’re ready for a fresh start.”
Leigh-Anne explained: “We were with Syco for seven years and had an incredible journey but it’s going to be nice to change it up and get a new view on us.
“A change and a fresh start is a good thing, we’re excited.”
Little Mix were the first group to win The X Factor at the height of its success back in 2011, a year after boyband One Direction finished third, and quickly joined the ranks of pop superstars with a string of chart hits – including Wings, Black Magic and Shout Out To My Ex.
Four of their albums have enjoyed platinum sales, and a string of spin-off projects including clothing ranges, perfume, beauty products and an autobiography have cemented their status as A-listers.
Away from the band Jesy won a National Television Award for her work on a landmark TV documentary called Odd One Out addressing online bullying and struggles with body image.
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