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Real Housewives Of Atlanta’s Kandi Burruss Shares Thoughts On NeNe Leakes Accusing Andy Cohen And Bravo Of Racism

screenshots of Kandi Burrus and NeNe Leakes on The Real Housewives of Atlanta
(Image credit: Bravo)

Overall, NeNe Leakes’ legacy on The Real Housewives of Atlanta is a bit complicated. She’s long been considered a top-ranking fan-favorite, due to her hilarious one-liners and expressions that would frequently turn into viral memes. However, the 54-year-old has left the show twice now. The most recent (and possibly final) time in 2020 occurred during a flurry of controversy, as Leakes accused both executive producer Andy Cohen and the Bravo network of racism. Ahead of the upcoming fourteenth season, main castmate Kandi Burruss reflected on those old accusations.

What NeNe Leakes Said About Andy Cohen And Bravo

First, we have to backpedal to the controversy (since 2020 was practically an age ago). In her official exit statement, NeNe Leakes would only suggest salary negotiations falling through to be the reason behind her second departure from the series, but she also thanked Bravo, the cast and the fans for the memories. Things turned sour, though, when Andy Cohen had Wendy Williams as a guest on WWHL a week later, per Vulture, where she joked about Leakes needing attention and losing money by dropping out. And the Real Housewives of Atlanta star had a huge reaction to the episode on Twitter, writing in one tweet:

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She also implied in another tweet that Andy Cohen was a “master manipulator,” who (along with Bravo) was only using her name for TV ratings. The next tweet seemed to threaten legal action, as the star asked her followers to send contact information for their “best discrimination attorneys” to her email, saying “ITS WAR.”

How Kandi Burruss Views NeNe Leakes Racism Claims

After NeNe Leakes’ exit and the more recent retirements of Cynthia Bailey and Porsha Williams, Kandi Burruss is now the last remaining OG castmate on the Bravo series. Her last season with Leakes saw them on relatively good terms, but that doesn’t mean she necessarily agrees with the allegations that her boss and network are racist. She said on the Sirius XM's The Clay Cane Show:

Realistically, I don’t agree. I mean, everybody can have their own opinion. I did not agree. I mean, I personally feel like, for years, [NeNe] has already told people that… she’s bragged about being the highest-paid housewife period or the highest-paid person on the network or something like that. Definitely she would tell people she’s the highest-paid on our show. But it was always rumored, we don’t know exactly how much people make on our network, but it’s always been rumored that Housewives of Atlanta makes more than any of the other franchises. So to me, with that being said, you can’t brag about being paid the most of anybody and then say that they’re not treating you right.

According to one report, the RHOA alum isn’t exactly the most successful Real Housewives star in the franchise. Nevertheless, it’s entirely possible that she herself doesn’t hold the same beliefs as she did in 2020. Following the tragic death of her husband Gregg and even after the drama from his memorial, the reality TV vet remarked at one point that she wasn’t totally against the idea of returning to the franchise. But then again, sometimes it’s hard to tell when NeNe Leakes is being sarcastic or sincere. 

NeNe Leakes and Kandi Burruss' most memorable moments from The Real Housewives of Atlanta are available to stream alongside Hulu's various original series.

Lauren Vanderveen
Lauren Vanderveen

Freelance writer. Favs: film history, reality TV, astronomy, French fries.