Queen Latifah fights tears as she accepts top BET honour

·1-min read

Queen Latifah was overcome with emotion as she collected her Lifetime Achievement Award at the BET Awards on Sunday night.

Holding back tears, the rap pioneer and actress took the stage after fellow female rappers Lil' Kim, Rapsody, MC Lyte and Monie Love delivered a stirring medley of Ladies First and U-N-I-T-Y, and had to compose herself before accepting the honour.

"I'm so extremely moved I don't even know what to...," she said. "I want to thank BET for creating an outlet for beautiful blackness to thrive, to shine. When we couldn't get played on the radio and other places, we couldn't get our videos played in other places, there was BET that allowed us to be in our fullness."

Latifah also thanked God, her friends, her father, who joined her onstage, and her late mother, stating, "I've always celebrated the woman because I was raised by a strong Black woman, and raised by a father who loves women.

"There is no way that I could have had the parents that I was born to - my father, my mother, who is still so much in me - my family.

"I love you - my siblings. My best friends who ride or die with me whether my face is on the dirt or I'm flying in the skies - they know me. And they're there for me."

She also gave longtime business partner Shakim Compere a big shout-out, adding, "Thank you for always protecting me and loving me... You and your family are my family."

Before she accepted the award, Latifah was also honoured in a video package by friends including Jada Pinkett Smith.

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