Andrew Neil has said that he isn’t happy with GB News’ shock coverage of Meghan Markle during an impassioned rant about the ‘s**t-show disaster’ news channel he recently left.
Neil was the GB News chairman, and he also had a role as a prime-time presenting host when the channel launched this June.
Following a raft of technical mishaps and controversies after the launch, the 72-year-old’s departure from the £60 million project was officially announced earlier this month.
Neil told GB News that he regretted having to go, but that he had made a decision to lower his commitments on a number fronts.
“Over the summer I’ve had time to reflect on my extensive portfolio of interests and decided it was time to cut back.
“I wish GB News well in continuing to fulfil its funding promise and mission to reach audiences currently underserved by existing news broadcasters.”
Now, Neil has revealed that the reasons behind his departure go far beyond having too many commitments. One of them is the way in which GB News covers Meghan Markle.
He told the Daily Mail: “I do feel angry though about what they’ve done to a beautiful dream. This was a vision that might have worked.
“But if you watch the constant themes that come through again and again from the shock jockeys on GB News, the perception is ‘we hate migrants, we hate the NHS, we hate lockdown and we hate Meghan Markle’.”
He also ranted that, off the back of his experience as chairman of Sky in 1988, he knew that GB News was not ready to launch when it did.
He continued: “When I do look back, the one thing I will say is I wish I’d been more publicly demonstrative about not launching on June 13.
“It wouldn’t have stopped the launch and it wouldn’t have stopped the s**t-show that followed, but I would have been on the record saying: ‘Don’t do this. It’s going to be a disaster.'”
Neil’s reputation, as one of the most decorated British journalists of all time, was tarnished by the channel’s long list of gaffes which left him “in despair”.
“Live TV is stressful at the best of times but not knowing whether or not the technology would work. It just got worse and worse,” Neil added.
“That stress was just huge. It meant you couldn’t think about the journalism. The constant question was: “Will it make it through the hour?” After that first week, I was certain I needed to leave.”
A statement from GB News to the Mail includes: “Andrew never raised concerns about GB News’s editorial direction moving to the left. As with all companies decision-making is up to the board. GB News is no exception. Andrew was a board member and had the same rights as other members to raise concerns and to be consulted on all decisions.”
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