Dan Walker: BBC should have defended Naga Munchetty in impartiality row

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BBC presenter Dan Walker during the FA Cup Final at Wembley Stadium, London. (Photo by Mike Egerton/PA Images via Getty Images)
BBC presenter Dan Walker during the FA Cup Final at Wembley Stadium, London. (Photo by Mike Egerton/PA Images via Getty Images)

Dan Walker reckons BBC bosses could've done more to defend his co-host Naga Munchetty when complaints were levied against her on comments she'd made about remarks made by Donald Trump.

Munchetty was said to have breached the corporation's rules surrounding impartiality on BBC Breakfast after stating that the US President's comments implying four US Congresswoman should "go back home" were "embedded in racism".

However, it was a decision which was eventually overturned by Director General Tony Hall.

Read more: Bill Turnbull defends Naga Munchetty after complaint overturned

Walker told Radio Times: "At the time it felt a very natural conversation. We knew in that moment that it was different to the sort of things we usually talk about. But I don’t regret it, and I don’t think Naga does either.

Naga Munchetty arrives at MediaCityUK in Salford to host BBC Breakfast for the first time since she was at the centre of an impartiality row over her criticism of Donald Trump. PA Photo. Picture date: Thursday October 3, 2019. It is her first on-screen appearance on the BBC Breakfast sofa since a ruling originally made by the BBCs Executive Complaints Unit (ECU) was overturned by the corporations Director-General Tony Hall. See PA story MEDIA Munchetty. Photo credit should read: Peter Byrne/PA Wire (Photo by Peter Byrne/PA Images via Getty Images)
Naga Munchetty arrives at MediaCityUK in Salford to host BBC Breakfast for the first time since she was at the centre of an impartiality row over her criticism of Donald Trump. (Photo by Peter Byrne/PA Images via Getty Images)

“The BBC should have given a more robust defence of their presenters. We do think it could have been dealt with very differently. It was the right decision to overturn the original finding, but it didn’t need to get that far. Both of us felt we sailed near the line but we didn’t cross it. They came round to the right decision eventually. They’ve apologised to Naga.”

It was later revealed that Walker had been included in the original viewer complaint, however, no action was taken against him.

Walker also revealed to the publication that he wrote to the Director General Hall as he explained: "If Naga is guilty, then I’m guilty’. At the time I didn’t know I’d been mentioned in the original complaint.”

The presenter added that while the hosts do share bits of themselves in their broadcast, in that instance they may've "shared a bit too much".

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