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Ofcom Receives Almost 2,000 Complaints Over Piers Morgan Interview

Ofcom Receives Almost 2,000 Complaints Over Piers Morgan Interview

Piers Morgan has urged his fans to back him after Ofcom received almost 2,000 complaints about one of his recent interviews.

The Good Morning Britain TV presenter quizzed Care Minister Helen Whately last week about the number of NHS staff who had died from coronavirus.

It made for awkward viewing, with Ms Whately seeming on the back foot for the majority of the interview, being corrected on her figures by Piers.

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Following the broadcast, the television regulator received 1,900 complaints from viewers who claimed the politician was treated 'unfairly'.

However, fighting his corner, Piers today called on his fans to back him.

Taking to Twitter, the 55-year-old said: "Apparently nearly 2000 people have now complained to @Ofcom about me grilling Care minister Helen Whateley too 'unfairly' when she couldn't answer even basic questions.

Piers Morgan pulled no punches. Credit: ITV
Piers Morgan pulled no punches. Credit: ITV
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"If you think I should continue grilling ministers in the way I've been doing, please tell @OFCOM. Thanks."

And it didn't take long for people to come to his defence, claiming the former Mirror editor was just doing his job.

One follower wrote: "At a time when thousands are dying each week in the UK from Covid-19, we must have journalists holding Gov Ministers to account, particularly when they don't understand their brief or evade and dodge reasonable questions. This @Ofcom is what Piers Morgan is rightly doing."

During the interview, Piers slammed the minister for talking absolute 'nonsense' when she claimed that just 19 NHS staff members had lost their lives working on the front line during the pandemic.

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Piers Morgan Cleared By Ofcom Following 4,000 Complaints Over 'Combative' Interviews
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Piers Morgan Cleared By Ofcom Following 4,000 Complaints Over 'Combative' Interviews

The journalist claimed that the figure was much higher, using newspaper reports to back up his point.

Ofcom received 1,900 over Piers' interview with Care Minister Helen Whately. Credit: ITV
Ofcom received 1,900 over Piers' interview with Care Minister Helen Whately. Credit: ITV

Responding to his accusations, Ms Whately replied: "I don't get my data from newspapers, I have to get it from the NHS and our scientists."

In a statement following the interview, Ofcom confirmed that it had received a number of complaints and was investigating them.

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It read: "We are assessing the complaints against our broadcasting rules, but are yet to decide whether or not to investigate."

Piers invited Ms Whately onto the programme again for a second interview, and she obliged.

However, it's now come to light that a further 214 complaints have been lodged off the back of this follow-up.

Piers raised the question of the number of people who had died in care homes, and criticised the minister for apparently not knowing the answer.

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He said: "You come back on this programme after what many people thought was a car-crash interview - at what point do you come back and have an answer?"

Bringing up the reported figures once more, he continued: "There is a very good reason to believe that it's over 41,000 people, including thousands and thousands in care homes, and that is your job to know this stuff.

"I find it incredibly insulting that the care minister has no idea how many people are dying in our care homes.

"These are elderly and vulnerable people, dying of Covid-19, and you are not taking their deaths seriously enough."

Featured Image Credit: ITV

Topics: uk news, Coronavirus, UK Entertainment, Piers Morgan

Dominic Smithers

Dominic graduated from the University of Leeds with a degree in French and History. Like you, Dom has often questioned how much use a second language has been. Well, after stints working at the Manchester Evening News, the Accrington Observer and the Macclesfield Express, along with never setting foot in France, he realised the answer is surprisingly little. But I guess, c'est la vie. Contact us at [email protected]