EMILY Maitlis has been replaced as host of tonight’s Newsnight after criticising Dominic Cummings for travelling 250 miles to his parents’ home during lockdown.
Maitlis will be replaced by Newsnight reporter Katie Razzall for tonight’s episode which starts at 10.45pm.
READ MORE: Emily Maitlis praised for Newsnight opening on Dominic Cummings row
Maitlis kicked off the show by saying “Dominic Cummings broke the rules. The country can see that, and it’s shocked the Government cannot.”
She went on: “He was the man, remember, who always got the public mood.
Who tagged the lazy label of elite on those who disagreed. He should understand that public mood now: one of fury, contempt and anguish.
“He made those who struggled to keep to the rules feel like fools, and has allowed many more to assume they can now flout them.”
“The Prime Minister knows all this, but despite the resignation of one minister, growing unease from his backbenchers, a dramatic early warning from the polls, and a deep national disquiet, Boris Johnson has chosen to ignore it.”
READ MORE: Emily Maitlis: BBC tells off Newsnight over Cummings row opening
OK, that is an opening… @maitlis tells it how it is. pic.twitter.com/1J3CMWHVpO
— Nearly Legal (@nearlylegal) May 26, 2020
The clip was shared widely on social media and was praised by many but due criticism from others – former Labour MP Kate Hoey said she and others would be issuing complaints over the episode.
The BBC News Press Team said: “The BBC must uphold the highest standards of due impartiality in its news output. We’ve reviewed the entirety of last night’s Newsnight, including the opening section, and while we believe the programme contained fair, reasonable and rigorous journalism, we feel that we should have done more to make clear the introduction was a summary of the questions we would examine, with all the accompanying evidence, in the rest of the programme.
“As it was, we believe the introduction we broadcast did not meet our standards of due impartiality. Our staff have been reminded of the guidelines.”
Keith Brown, SNP deputy leader, said: “This statement is a gutless capitulation by BBC bosses. Newsnight should be commended – not slapped down – for their serious investigative work on Cummings, that’s not something you could say about the BBC News at 10.
“Pandering to 10 Downing Street by curbing journalists from being able to hold the UK government to account is of serious concern.”
An SNP spokesperson added: “It’s ironic that the only apology over the whole Dominic Cummings lockdown breaches scandal comes from the BBC.”