Australian radio hosts who made prank call to royal hospital taken off air over nurse's death
The Australian radio presenters responsible for the hoax call to King Edward VII’s Hospital have been removed from the air until further notice.
News of the death of Jacintha Saldanha broke in the early hours of Saturday morning in Australia. Executives from 2Day FM conferred during the night and at 5.30am Australian time the radio station announced that the two DJs responsible for the hoax call which Ms Saldanha answered, Mel Greig and Michael Christian, were being stood aside.
The radio station and its owner, the Australian media group Southern Cross Austereo (SCA), released a statement saying that they were “deeply saddened by the tragic news of the death of nurse Jacintha Saldanha from King Edward VII’s Hospital and we extend our deepest sympathies to her family and all that have been affected by this situation around the world.”
They went on to say that the company’s chief executive, Rhys Holleran, had spoken with the two DJs, who were “deeply shocked and at this time we have agreed that they not comment about the circumstances”.
The statement added: “SCA and the hosts have decided that they will not return to their radio show until further notice out of respect for what can only be described as a tragedy.”
The radio station this week apologised for “any inconvenience” caused by the prank, but had sought to capitalise on the worldwide publicity it generated, replaying extended clips of the call over the airwaves and on its website.
Mr Christian, who attempted to impersonate Prince Charles in a crude mock British accent, promised further discussion of the prank on his Twitter account, which was taken down after news broke of Ms Saldanha’s death. There were immediate threats against, and condemnation of, the DJs on social media.
The Australian media regulator, ACMA, said on Thursday that it had received complaints about the call by the station, which is currently the subject of two five-year endorsements on its licence for breaches of broadcasting rules.
- 1 Asteroid narrowly scrapes past Earth: how to watch the closest space rock for decades as it flies by
- 2 Saudi preacher who 'raped and tortured' his five -year-old daughter to death is released after paying 'blood money'
- 3 The enemy within: People who hear voices in their heads are being encouraged to talk back
- 4 British grandmother Lindsay Sandiford faces execution by firing squad in Indonesia
- 5 Watch Richard Dawkins read his own hatemail: 'I hope you do get sodomised by satanic monkeys in hell'
Paris attacks: Do not call Charlie Hebdo killers 'terrorists', BBC says
UK weather: Snow to fall in the coming week with sub-zero temperatures to last until early February
Asteroid narrowly scrapes past Earth: how to watch the closest space rock for decades as it flies by
Saudi preacher who 'raped and tortured' his five -year-old daughter to death is released after paying 'blood money'
Prince Philip set to be knighted by Australia: Celebrate by reading his greatest gaffes
'We would evict Queen from Buckingham Palace and allocate her council house,' say Greens
French court convicts three over homophobic tweets, in case hailed as a 'significant victory' by LGBT rights campaigners
Greece elections: Syriza and EU on collision course after election win for left-wing party
British Muslim school children suffering a backlash of abuse following Paris attacks
Islamic history is full of free thinkers - but recent attempts to suppress critical thought are verging on the absurd
30,000 reasons why the rhetoric on immigrants claiming benefits can stop now
£38000 - £42000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: One of the UK's best performing...
£35000 - £43000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: Our award-winning client is one...
£15000 - £21000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This leading provider of Atlas ...
£18000 - £20000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: Opportunity to join established...