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GB NEWS COULD BE SANCTIONED AFTER BREACHING OFCOM IMPARTIALITY RULES

An Ofcom investigation today concluded that People’s Forum: The Prime Minister on GB News broke broadcasting due impartiality rules. Ofcom say: "Given this represents a serious and repeated breach of these rules, we are now starting the process for consideration of a statutory sanction against GB News."


Ofcom received 547 complaints about this live, hour-long current affairs programme. It featured the Prime Minister, Rishi Sunak, in a question-and-answer session with a studio audience about the Government’s policies and performance, presented in the context of the forthcoming UK General Election.



This met the definition of a major matter under our rules, so the heightened special impartiality requirements applied.


They continue: "Ofcom has no issue with this programme’s editorial format in principle. In line with freedom of expression, broadcasters are free to innovate and use different editorial techniques in their programming – including offering audiences innovative forms of debate. But in doing so, they must observe the rules in our Broadcasting Code.



We recognised that this programme would focus mainly on the Conservative Party’s policies and track-record on a number of specific issues, meaning that Conservative viewpoints would be prevalent. We are clear that this, in and of itself, did not mean the programme could not comply with due impartiality rules under the Code.


It was incumbent on GB News, however, given the major matters under discussion, to ensure that an appropriately wide range of significant views  was given due weight in the programme or in other clearly linked and timely programmes."



GB News is available on Sky channel 512.

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