Naga Munchetty BBC complaint also mentioned co-host Dan Walker – report

The original complaint about Naga Munchetty's Donald Trump comments that led to her being reprimanded by the BBC also mentioned her Breakfast co-host Dan Walker, it has been reported.

The BBC last week partially upheld a complaint against Ms Munchetty, ruling that she had crossed an editorial guideline speaking out on air about comments made by the US president, which were widely condemned as racist.

Ms Munchetty was the focus of the BBC's executive complaints unit's (ECU) investigation because an appeal by the complainant focused on her comments rather than her and Mr Walker together.

The corporation's director of editorial policy and standards David Jordan also previously clarified this, saying on two occasions that Mr Walker could not be included in the rebuke as he was not referred to in the specific complaint that was partially upheld by the ECU.

However, according to The Guardian, the original complaint did refer to Mr Walker, with the member of the public describing him as "very unprofessional" and accusing him of "repeatedly expressing incredulity" that Mr Trump's remarks could be defended.

The newspaper reports that it was only in a later version of the complaint that "specifically focused on Ms Munchetty's comments rather than Mr Walker's" that was the focus of the ECU investigation.

It is claimed that the decision to reprimand only Ms Munchetty and not Mr Walker has created unease among BBC staff, with a senior journalist at the corporation telling The Guardian: "They've chosen to interpret the complaint as only being about Naga and made her a sacrificial lamb.

"The process is a mess. David Jordan has led two programmes to believe that the complaint wasn't about Dan Walker when it clearly was."

15 PHOTOS
Naga Munchetty
See Gallery
Naga Munchetty
Naga Munchetty attending the Virgin Media BAFTA TV awards, held at the Royal Festival Hall in London.
Naga Munchetty and Sophie Rayworth attending the Virgin Media BAFTA TV awards, held at the Royal Festival Hall in London. Photo credit should read: Doug Peters/EMPICS
Naga Munchetty, Aaron Fellowes, Louis Theroux and Sophie Rayworth in the press room during the Virgin Media BAFTA TV awards, held at the Royal Festival Hall in London. Photo credit should read: Doug Peters/EMPICS
BBC Breakfast presenter Naga Munchetty
BBC Breakfast presenter Charlie Stayt (centre), Louis Minchin (left) and Naga Munchetty (right)
Naga Munchetty at The TRIC Awards (Television and Radio Industries Club Awards) at Grosvenor House, Park Lane (Photo by Keith Mayhew / SOPA Images/Sipa USA)
Naga Munchetty attending the TRIC Awards 2019 50th Birthday Celebration held at the Grosvenor House Hotel, London.
RETRANSMITTED CORRECTING DATE Naga Munchetty (left) and an unidentified woman arriving at Chiltern Firehouse in London to celebrate Kylie Minogue's 50th birthday.
Naga Munchetty attending the BAFTA Craft Awards at the Brewery in London.
Naga Munchetty attending the TRIC Awards 50th Birthday held at The Grosvenor House Hotel, London. Picture Credit Should Read: Doug Peters/EMPICS
BBC Breakfast presenters Mike Bushell, Louise Minchin, Dan Walker, Naga Munchetty, Carol Kirkwood and Sally Nugent attending the National Television Awards 2017 held at the O2, London. Photo credit should read: Doug Peters/EMPICS Entertainment
Naga Munchetty, Ben Thompson, Carol Kirkwood and Charlie Stayt attending the 2017 Television and Radio Industries Club Awards, Grosvenor House, Park Lane, London.
Naga Munchetty attending The Pride of Britain Awards 2016, at Grosvenor House, Park Lane, London. Photo credit should read: Doug Peters/EMPICS Entertainment
Naga Munchetty at the launch of Strictly Come Dancing 2016 at Elstree Studios in Hertfordshire. Picture date: Tuesday August 30, 2016. Photo credit should read: Doug Peters/EMPICS Entertainment
Naga Munchetty at the launch of Strictly Come Dancing 2016 at Elstree Studios in Hertfordshire. Picture date: Tuesday 30th August, 2016. See PA story SHOWBIZ Strictly. Photo credit should read: Ian West/PA Wire.
HIDE CAPTION
SHOW CAPTION
of
SEE ALL
BACK TO SLIDE

A BBC spokesman said: "The appeal to the ECU focused on comments by one presenter, but the statement from the executive team on Friday is clear, the BBC is not impartial on racism.

"Racism is not an opinion and it is not a matter for debate.

"Racism is racism. Naga has the very clear support of the top of the organisation."

The ECU ruled that Ms Munchetty crossed the line when she condemned comments made by Mr Trump when he told female Democrat politicians to "go back" to their own countries.

In a July BBC Breakfast broadcast, prompted by Mr Walker, Ms Munchetty went on to give her opinion on Mr Trump in response to his remarks.

The BBC has faced a backlash over its decision, with a petition calling for its decision to be reversed attracting more than 14,000 signatures.

Stars including Sir Lenny Henry, Gina Yashere and Adrian Lester told the BBC its position in rebuking Ms Munchetty was "deeply flawed" and "illegal" in a letter.

Sir Lenny Henry
Sir Lenny Henry (Daniel Leal-Olivas/PA)


Elsewhere, the likes of Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn and Chancellor Sajid Javid are among those who have criticised the ruling and aired support for Ms Munchetty, and broadcasting watchdog Ofcom will also assess what was said against its own broadcasting rules.

On Friday, Mr Jordan told Newswatch: "There is no doubt that the comment that he (President Trump) made was racist.

"To say to anybody from an ethnic minority community, from an immigrant community, that they should go back to where they came from is just ignorant prejudice, and is racism."

Mr Jordan added: "Dan Walker's contribution was not, as it were, helpful in the context. It could be said that Dan Walker kind of led Naga Munchetty to the conclusion that she eventually made."

The Sunday Times alleged that minority staff and presenters at the BBC have been told by the corporation not to join in any form of protest supporting Ms Munchetty.

Read Full Story

FROM OUR PARTNERS