Nigel Farage 'blood on his hands' controversy: Media monitor blasts 'sensationalist' BBC

Nigel Farage was furious at the 'blood on his hands' interview

Nigel Farage wants an apology from the BBC

Wednesday, September 13, 2017

A media monitor has criticised the BBC for the "sensationalist" report which has provoked a furious response from Nigel Farage.

The former Ukip leader has demanded an apology from the BBC for a feature about the death of Polish man Arkadiusz Jozwik in Essex in the weeks after the Brexit vote.

A local resident interviewed for the feature claimed the former Ukip leader had "blood on his hands" for driving anti-immigrant sentiment in the Brexit campaign. However the case has now concluded, with investigators deciding that the incident was not a hate crime.

David Keighley, who runs monotoring service News-Watch, said the BBC report was "sensationalist" and the 'blood on his hands' comment could have been left out - but reporter John Sweeney, who put together the report, chose to include it. 

The chain of events which led to the Polish man's death, Keighley said, "was nothing to do with what the BBC actually reported", and although the corporation has now run a correction to the original story, it was not published on the front page of the BBC website.

Keighley continued by saying that the BBC "has extra responsibilities as a public service broadcaster to check out the facts" before publishing a report, yet they continually "brush off complaints" and "pretend they do balanced reporting when they haven't."

"It's a systematic problem within the BBC," he said. "They are incapable of admitting their own errors and the bias seems so deeply entrenched in their Brexit coverage."

Julia added that she was "stunned" by the BBC's coverage of Brexit and said the sort of violence which happened in Essex "had nothing to do with Brexit."

Earlier this year the incoming BBC chairman Sir David Clementi demanded a report on the corporation's Brexit coverage and put "impartiality, independence and accuracy" at the top of his agenda.

The corporation says in its editorial guidelines that impartiality "is the core of the BBC's commitment to its audiences" and "applies to all our output and services."