NUJ statement on BBC Gary Lineker decision

  • 10 Mar 2023

General secretary Michelle Stanistreet on the broadcaster's "dangerous position" following announcements that the presenter is to step back from his role on Match of the Day.

Following the BBC’s decision to force Gary Lineker to step down from fronting Match of the Day this weekend, NUJ general secretary Michelle Stanistreet said:

“This is a massive own goal on the part of the BBC.

“Yielding to sustained political pressure in this way is as foolish as it is dangerous.

“Who is convinced that genuine concern for impartiality is the driving force here? It doesn’t wash – not least when the BBC’s chairman failed to declare his critical role in a £800,000 loan facility to the former Prime Minister, is backed to the hilt by this government, and is still resisting calls for his resignation weeks after an excoriating government select committee report called on him to consider his position and journalists across the BBC voted overwhelmingly to demand his immediate resignation.

“As the BBC is plunged tonight into yet another crisis of its own making, it’s heartening to see solidarity in action on the part of fellow presenters – a timely warm-up of why collective action matters, ahead of the strike by NUJ members across England on Wednesday and Thursday who are fighting to preserve quality local news at our public service broadcaster.”


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