BBC changes apology to Andrew Sachs after exclusion complain

November 9th, 2008 - 5:43 pm ICT by ANI  

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London, Nov 9 (ANI): BBC was forced to change an apology to Andrew Sachs over the Jonathan Ross and Russell Brand scandal after the actor complained that it was not directly referring to his wife and daughter.

The apology, which was broadcasted on Radio 2, had to be reworded by the Corporation after 78-year-old Sachs complained saying that the two had been deeply hurt by the affair.

Sachs telephoned the BBC after listening to the first of two planned broadcasts of the statement and asked for the second apology to be changed.

Mr Sachs asked us to specifically include mention of his wife and family in the second broadcast apology at 9.03 pm and we were happy to do this, the Telegraph quoted a BBC spokeswoman as saying.

The first apology had been aired on Radio 2 just after 10am when Ross would normally be hosting his show, and it was aired again at 9pm, during Brand’’s former slot.

On 18 October, the BBC broadcast an exchange between Russell Brand and Jonathan Ross on the Russell Brand show on Radio 2, the full apology stated.

This concerned the actor Andrew Sachs and his granddaughter, Georgina Baillie. Some of this exchange was left on the voicemail of Mr Sachs.

The conversation was grossly offensive and an unacceptable intrusion into the private lives of both Mr Sachs and Ms Baillie.

It was a serious breach of editorial standards, and should never have been recorded or broadcast. The BBC would like to apologise unreservedly to Mr Sachs, Ms Baillie and to our audience as licence fee payers, it ended.

The broadcast followed the resignation on Friday of David Barber, Radio 2′’s head of specialist music and compliance, whose job it was to ensure that all content broadcast complied with BBC guidelines.

Lesley Douglas, Radio 2′’s controller, also resigned last month, although the BBC has still not identified the person responsible for approving the broadcast, which has provoked more than 40,000 complaints.

An internal inquiry is currently being carried out into the events, which led to the calls being aired. (ANI)

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