The Compliance Committee of the Broadcasting Authority of Ireland (“BAI”) issued a Statement on 22nd November 2012.
That Statement referred to a report published by RTÉ and was concerned with issues arising in connection with the Frontline Presidential Debate, broadcast on 24th of October 2011. That report was co-authored by Mr. Rob Morrison and published on 18th November 2012.
In the Statement of 22nd November 2012, the Compliance Committee asked RTÉ to release a working document upon which their report was based as, in the opinion of the Compliance Committee, the working document provided additional insights into the editorial failings of the programme.
It was widely reported in the media that the Statement of 22nd November 2012 meant that the authors of the report deliberately omitted, withheld and/or suppressed and/or otherwise co-operated with RTÉ to cover up details of the editorial findings of the Frontline programme. Mr. Morrison issued proceedings against the BAI on this basis.
The BAI never believed this to be the case, nor was it intended to suggest this and we apologise for any upset caused to Mr. Morrison arising out of the Statement of 22nd November 2012.
As part of the terms of settlement reached with Mr. Morrison, the BAI is happy to make it clear that we believe that Mr. Morrison (and his co-author) carried out an excellent, in-depth and considered examination of the programme. Given the thoroughness of their investigation, the BAI did not consider it was necessary to carry out a statutory investigation under Section 53 of the Broadcasting Act.