What did Emily Maitlis say on the opening of Newsnight?

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EMILY Maitlis has been accused of being bias following her comments about Dominic Cummings on Newsnight.

We take you through exactly what happened and how the BBC reacted.

Emily Maitlis has been slammed for opening speech on Newsnight on May 26, 2020
BBC

What did Emily Maitlis say on the opening of Newsnight?

In a scathing monologue on Newsnight on May 26, 2020 show, Emily voiced her opinion on the Dominic Cummings situation ( the PM’s top aide broke lockdown rules).

Her comments sparked an impartiality row, she said: “Dominic Cummings broke the rules, the country can see that, and it’s shocking the Government cannot. He should understand that public mood now. One of fury, contempt and anguish.

“He made those who struggled to keep to the rules feel like fools, and has allowed many more to assume they can now flout them.

“The Prime Minister knows all this, but despite the resignation of one minister, growing unease from his backbenchers, a dramatic early warning from the polls, and a deep national disquiet, Boris Johnson has chosen to ignore it. Tonight we consider what this blind loyalty tells us about the workings of Number 10.”

Katie Razzall fronted the show the following night instead of Emily Maitlis
BBC

Was Emily Maitlis taken off air?

Emily was noticeably absent the following evening on May 27, 2020.

Her spot was filled by Katie Razzall.

As viewers wondered why Ms Maitlis wasn’t on the show for her usual stint as host, Ms Razzall tonight tweeted: “Just for the record, Emily @maitlis has not been asked by the BBC to take tonight off – and if I thought she had been, I certainly wouldn’t have agreed to present the show.”

She did not address Ms Maitlis’ absence as she opened the programme though.

Emilu herself tweeted: “So grateful to my friend and excellent colleague @katierazz for stepping in this evening.

“She did so because I asked for the night off -knowing tonight’s prog would be in the most excellent hands 🖐 #newsnight.”


What have the BBC said about Emily Maitlis?

The BBC have apologised for Emily’s comments on Newsnight.

The broadcaster tweeted: “The BBC must uphold the highest standards of due impartiality in its news output.

“We’ve reviewed the entirety of last night’s Newsnight, including the opening section, and while we believe the programme contained fair, reasonable and rigorous journalism, we feel that we should have done more to make clear the introduction was a summary of the questions we would examine, with all the accompanying evidence, in the rest of the programme.

“As it was, we believe the introduction we broadcast did not meet our standards of due impartiality. Our staff have been reminded of the guidelines.”