The BBC “is no longer an impartial state broadcaster” according to a former Labour government minister.
Lord Andrew Adonis made the accusation in response to comments posted on social media by BBC presenter Andrew Neil.
The two have been involved in an online spat after the Labour peer criticised the broadcaster’s pro-Brexit coverage. Adonis, who was a minister in first Tony Blair’s government and then Gordon Brown’s, also took a swipe at Neil’s “inflated BBC salary”.
The exchange follows criticism of the BBC this week by the former Labour minister who has highlighted examples of what he insists is a pro-Brexit bias. Adonis claimed that the BBC was degenerating into “a Brexit propaganda station” and called on “weak Ofcom” to do its job.
On Friday Adonis revealed he had sent a letter to the BBC’s head Tony Hall after former UKIP leader Nigel Farage was invited onto BBC flagship programme Question Time for a 32nd time. The Labour peer also complained at the BBC’s description of the EU as a ‘corpse’.
Reference to the EU as a ‘corpse’ appeared in an online article published by the BBC on Wednesday.
The headline was eventually changed, but not before Adonis had engaged in another online row with former BBC Political Editor, Nick Robinson. Adonis had accused the BBC presenter of “complacency” after Robinson had boasted that the BBC was “the most trusted source of news”.
Adonis’ claims that the BBC is operating a pro-Brexit agenda follows criticsm of its Scottish branch after analysis found Brexit stories had been either ignored or sidelined by flagship news programme Reporting Scotland. The editor of Reporting Scotland rejected a recent complaint regarding the placement of Brexit stories and insisted coverage was in line with the BBC’s Editorial Guidelines.
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