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Naga Munchetty row: BBC now blames Dan Walker

The BBC has been asked to reverse its ruling on Naga Munchetty.  (Photo by Dan Kitwood/Getty Images)
The BBC has been asked to reverse its ruling on Naga Munchetty. (Photo by Dan Kitwood/Getty Images)

A top executive at the BBC on Friday (27) appeared to accuse Naga Munchetty’s co-host Dan Walker for the ongoing racism row.

David Jordan, the BBC’s director of editorial policy and standards, said that Walker’s contribution to the debate was not helpful.

Jordan said: “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.”

“I don’t think we’ve singled anyone out. I’m afraid the Executive Complaints Unit deals with the complaints it gets, so some people say why isn’t Dan Walker being singled out in the same way,” he continued.

“The simple fact is we haven’t had a complaint.

“They are obliged to deal with the complaints they have, not the complaints they might like to have.”

Munchetty was recently reprimanded after she accused US president Donald Trump of being a racist  for posting a series of tweets asking four Democratic Congresswomen to “go back” to the “places from which they came.”

Recalling her own experiences of racism, Munchetty said: “Every time I’ve been told as a woman of colour to “go home”, to “go back to where I’ve come from,” that was embedded in racism,” she said.

“Now I’m not accusing anyone of anything here but you know what certain phrases mean.”

A BBC spokeswoman said on Wednesday (25) the corporation’s Executive Complaints Unit [ECU] had ruled that while Munchetty was “entitled to give a personal response to the phrase ‘go back to your own country’ as it was rooted in her own experience, overall her comments went beyond what the guidelines allow for”.

Meanwhile, a group of 150 BAME broadcasters have written a letter to the BBC asking the corporation to reverse its ruling against  Munchetty.

Those who have signed the letter include actors Adrian Lester and David Harewood, Channel 4 News anchor Krishnan Guru-Murthy and comedienne Gina Yashere.

Chancellor Sajid Javid has also backed Munchetty, and called the BBC’s decision “ridiculous.”