Ashanti finally confirms she’s pregnant and engaged to Nelly

Home*Cover Story*Entertainment

Ashanti finally confirms she’s pregnant and engaged to Nelly

Ashanti has finally confirmed the longstanding rumor that she is expecting a baby with boyfriend Nelly.

In a video posted to Instagram on Wednesday (April 17), the singer made the reveal with a scripted skit in a fitting partnership with Proov fertility tests and Essence magazine.

In the backstage clip, the 43-year-old’s team members call for her to take the stage before her mother and manager Tina Douglas finally asks: “Shan, how much time you need?”

As the “Only U” hitmaker enters the frame, she replies: “Uh, I’m gonna need about nine months.”

Her partner is also tagged in the video, which is captioned “Baby baby baby baby…” — an homage to Ashanti’s 2002 single “Baby.”

Just minutes after the social-media clip went live, Essence published an exclusive interview with the veteran singer, in which she confirmed her engagement to Nelly.

“This new year of my life is such a blessing full of love, hope, and anticipation,” she said. “Motherhood is something that I have looked forward to, and sharing this with my family, fiancee, and loyal fans, who have been so supportive of my career, is an amazing experience.”

Tina Douglas was congratulated about the rumored pregnancy during a public appearance last month, and her answer all but confirmed the chatter.

In response, she said that nothing has been announced “yet,” before appearing to confirm the news by simply saying it hadn’t “officially been announced.”

“Well, there’s been no announcement. It hasn’t come out yet,” she said. “But, you know, until I hear it from Ashanti and Nelly …”

When the host offered her apologies, she replied: “No, it is public. Don’t get it twisted. But it hasn’t officially been announced. So until it is …”

Rumors about Ashanti being pregnant surfaced back in December, when the “Hot In Herre” rapper was spotted rubbing her stomach on stage at the Black and White Ball in St. Louis, Missouri.

Many saw that as a response to people online nudging the celebrity couple to “seal the deal.”

Ashanti further added fuel to the rumors in January during a performance alongside Ja Rule, with the “Foolish” hitmaker appearing with what some interpreted as a discreetly concealed baby bump.

The former Murder Inc. labelmates performed their smash hit “Mesmerize,” with the New York vocalist wearing an oversized t-shirt dress paired with thigh-high boots, leading fans to think she was attempting to hide her pregnancy.

Nelly officially confirmed that he and Ashanti were back together in September, calling it a “surprise” for both of them.

“Yeah, we cool again,” he said at the time. “I think it surprised both of us. It wasn’t anything that I don’t think planned. I think we were both doing pretty much what we do. Sometimes being separate you understand one another more.”

The pair first dated back in 2003, then split a decade later in 2013.