Prince William honors singer M.I.A. at Buckingham Palace

LONDON — (AP) — British singer M.I.A. has received a prestigious award from Prince William at a Buckingham Palace.

She was made a Member of the Order of the British Empire, or MBE, at the palace ceremony Tuesday hosted by William as a representative of his grandmother, Queen Elizabeth II.

The 44-year-old performer, who real name is Mathangi Arulpragasam, was honored for “services to music.” The honors list is published twice a year by Britain's Cabinet Office to reward people for public service, research, artistic achievement and other accomplishments.

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The singer said the honor was particularly meaningful because her mother had once worked hand stitching medals distributed by the palace.

“Today I'm accepting this in honour for my mother who worked for minimum wage to give us a better life. As a working class first generation immigrant it's great to be recognized for my contribution,” she said.

“Having freedom to speak my truth and to do it through music has helped me speak for those who do not have those privileges. I will continue fight for those who are silenced or persecuted by others.”

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This story has been corrected to show that the queen is Prince William's grandmother, not mother.

Rapper and singer MIA, real name Mathangi Arulpragasam, is made an MBE by Prince William Duke of Cambridge, left, at Buckingham Palace, in London, Tuesday Jan. 14, 2020. The honorary award is conferred in recognition of contributions to the arts, sport, sciences, and charitable works. (Jonathan Brady/PA via AP)
Rapper and singer MIA, real name Mathangi Arulpragasam, is made an MBE by Prince William Duke of Cambridge, left, at Buckingham Palace, in London, Tuesday Jan. 14, 2020. The honorary award is conferred in recognition of contributions to the arts, sport, sciences, and charitable works. (Jonathan Brady/PA via AP) (Jonathan Brady)
Rapper and singer MIA, real name Mathangi Arulpragasam, poses with her MBE award following an investiture ceremony at Buckingham Palace in London, Tuesday Jan, 14, 2020. The British Empire award is presented in royal recognition of contributions to the arts, sciences, and charitable works. (Yui Mok/PA via AP)
Rapper and singer MIA, real name Mathangi Arulpragasam, poses with her MBE award following an investiture ceremony at Buckingham Palace in London, Tuesday Jan, 14, 2020. The British Empire award is presented in royal recognition of contributions to the arts, sciences, and charitable works. (Yui Mok/PA via AP) (Yui Mok)
Rapper and singer MIA, real name Mathangi Arulpragasam, is made an MBE by Prince William Duke of Cambridge, left, at Buckingham Palace, in London, Tuesday Jan. 14, 2020. The honorary award is conferred in recognition of contributions to the arts, sport, sciences, and charitable works. (Jonathan Brady/PA via AP)
Rapper and singer MIA, real name Mathangi Arulpragasam, is made an MBE by Prince William Duke of Cambridge, left, at Buckingham Palace, in London, Tuesday Jan. 14, 2020. The honorary award is conferred in recognition of contributions to the arts, sport, sciences, and charitable works. (Jonathan Brady/PA via AP) (Jonathan Brady)