DESPITE an outpouring of anger towards the increasingly unpopular broadcaster, presenters Naga Munchetty and Charlie Strayt will face no disciplinary action.
During the controversial episode of the breakfast show, Strayt said to a government minister: “I think your flag is not up to standard size, government interview measurements. I think it’s just a little bit small, but that’s your department really”.
Ms Munchetty was then filmed sniggering into her hand and adding: “There’s always a flag. They had the picture of the Queen, though.”
The BBC’s impartiality rules are clear: “Always behave professionally, treating others with respect and courtesy at all times – follow the BBC’s Values. Don’t bring the BBC into disrepute. If your work requires you to maintain your impartiality, don’t express a personal opinion on matters of public policy, politics, or controversial subjects”.
In 2020, the ailing broadcaster announced additional rules to ensure the impartiality of its staff on social media.
Yet, straight after the offensive episode, Munchetty decided to reject these rules further – going on to revel in the far-left’s praise over her anti-patriotism, and liking several tweets.
One such comment liked by the controversial presenter read: “What has Charlie done? The flag shaggers will be up in arms. Tell him we love him.”
Upon receiving further criticism, Munchetty lied to her followers in a lacklustre ‘apology’.
Yet despite such a flagrant and widely criticised breach of impartiality rules, the BBC and OFCOM (both funded by hardworking British taxpayers) have – true to form – failed to take any action, with the BBC simply confirming that the pair had been ‘spoken to’ and ‘reminded of their responsibilities’.
Meanwhile, OFCOM, the media regulatory body that has been criticised for taking huge sums of cash while providing little return, confirmed to VoteWatch that they would also not be taking any action, yet confirmed that they may investigate should they receive complaints objecting to the BBC’s decision.
“As per the BBC First process, complaints about BBC programming needs to first be dealt with by the BBC’s internal process” a spokesperson said. “If a viewer is unsatisfied with the response, they can refer to the complaint to Ofcom where our team will assess the complaints against our broadcasting rules.”
Commenting shortly after the incident, Secretary of State for Digital, Culture and Media Oliver Dowden said: “I’m concerned that what started as light-hearted banter became sneering which is not the BBC at its best.
“As I’ve said before, it is so important that the BBC reflects and respects the values of the whole of the UK.”
Other high profile figures took to social media to criticise the BBC, including Baroness Hoey, former Labour MP for Vauxhall, who wrote: “This is exactly why (the BBC) should no longer be allowed to charge a licence fee – always snidy about anyone standing up for our country and Her Majesty. #defundthebbc.”
Meanwhile former BBC journalist Andrew Neil said on Twitter: “Sometimes the BBC forgets what the first B stands for.”