Ofcom has published its findings following an investigation into Piers Morgan's criticism of Meghan Markle following her and Prince Harry's Oprah Winfrey Interview.
Ofcom has ruled that Piers’ comments about Meghan Markle were ‘freedom of expression’ and as a result, Good Morning Britain was ‘not in breach’ of the broadcasting code.
The broadcasting standards regulator carried out an investigation earlier this year after receiving 57,000 complaints from viewers who took offence to the TV presenter’s words during a discussion on the ITV daytime show, following Prince Harry and Meghan Markle’s Oprah Winfrey interview.
At the time, Piers made clear that he didn’t “believe a word” Meghan said during the bombshell interview.
During the tell-all chat, the Duchess of Sussex opened up about her mental health struggles during her time in the royal spotlight and claimed that an unnamed member of the royal family made a comment about the colour of Archie’s skin, before he was born.
Speaking about Meghan opening up on her suicidal feelings and reporting that she was not given help after reaching out to The Firm,Piers said on Good Morning Britain, “Who did you go to? What did they say to you? I’m sorry, I don’t believe a word she said, Meghan Markle.”
Piers continued, “I wouldn’t believe it if she read me a weather report,” adding, “The fact that she’s fired up this onslaught against our Royal Family I think is contemptible.”
Piers later clashed with GMB weather presenter Alex Beresford before walking off the programme and officially quitting. And six months later, Piers Morgan has announced a major career move.
The Ofcom concluding statement following its investigation, reads, “Consistent with freedom of expression, Mr Morgan was entitled to say he disbelieved the Duke and Duchess of Sussex’s allegations and to hold and express strong views that rigorously challenged their account.
It continued, “The [broadcasting] code allows for individuals to express strongly held and robustly argued views, including those that are potentially harmful or highly offensive, and for broadcasters to include these in their programming.
“The restriction of such views would, in our view, be an unwarranted and chilling restriction on freedom of expression both of the broadcaster and the audience,” Ofcom added.
Piers, who has been enjoying a family holiday in Antigua, tweeted his joy at the verdict.
He said, ‘I’m delighted OFCOM has endorsed my right to disbelieve the Duke & Duchess of Sussex’s incendiary claims to Oprah Winfrey, many of which have proven to be untrue. This is a resounding victory for free speech and a resounding defeat for Princess Pinocchios. Do I get my job back?’ As he shared a snap of him sat beside Susanna Reid hosting the programme.