Racist slur: New Zealand TV receives 1,500 complaints

Last Updated 03 May 2018, 04:15 IST

TVNZ said that it has upheld 1,500 complaints against its former Breakfast host Paul Henry.New Zealand Herald Monday reported that the TV station received a flood of complaints after Henry asked Prime Minister John Key whether Satyanand was "even a New Zealander".

He also made fun of Delhi Chief Minister Sheila Dikshit's name, triggering protests in India.
TVNZ in a letter sent to all complainants acknowledged that the comments were offensive, and it upheld complaints on the grounds that they breached standards of fairness and discrimination, good taste and decency.

The letter said: "The complaints committee sincerely apologises to you for the breach of Broadcasting Standards. We understand that you were deeply offended by Paul Henry's comments."

TVNZ also denounced Henry's mocking of Sheila Dikshit.The committee observed that his repeated mispronounciation of her name as "dik shit" and attempt to make a scatological joke about it breached Broadcasting Standards.

Henry resigned from TVNZ after India took up the issue with New Zealand.
The company had done all it could to deal with the comments, TVNZ spokesperson Megan Richards said, adding: "It's hard to see what could be done beyond what has been done."

On Oct 14, Sir Anand Satyanand accepted the apology from the TV channel.
Satyanand is New Zealand's first governor-general of Indian and Pacific ancestry. He had a lengthy career as a lawyer, judge and ombudsman before being appointed to the job in August 2006.

He was born and raised in Auckland. His parents were born in Fiji and migrated to New Zealand while his grandparents were born in India and had migrated to Fiji.

(Published 18 October 2010, 06:26 IST)

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