The BBC tried to prevent an external investigation into Naga Munchettys comments about Donald Trump, and the media regulatory body Ofcom said it had serious concerns around the transparency of the BBCs complaints process.
BBC director general Lord Hall recently overturned a decision to partially uphold a complaint against Munchetty, a BBC Breakfast host for comments she made about Donald Trump.
Ofcom criticised the lack of transparency over the original ruling after launching its own inquiry following a nation-wide outcry, and has concluded that Munchettys comments to fellow show host Dan Walker did not breach the broadcasters guidelines on impartiality.
The regularity body made the decision to publish its reasons for its assessment because of the significant public concern about this case.
In addition, Ofcom published correspondences sent between it and the BBC following a request by the regulatory body for background information, and the latters refusal to provide additional evidence about how the initial decision came to be.
BBCs editorial standards Chief David Jordan oversees the complaints process and in the letters argued Ofcom did not have the authority to examine the internal case.
He told Ofcom there was no proper basis for Ofcoms proposed action adding that the BBC had reversed its initial decision, and argued the Munchetty case did not fall into the category of exceptional circumstances.
Jordan went on to say: I am disappointed, therefore, that Ofcom is assessing a broadcast with a view potentially to undertaking an investigation for which it has no clear jurisdiction, rather than handling complaints it has received about the programme in the normal way.
Ofcom investigated Munchettys comments and found she did not break its code rules on due impartiality, concluding: This style of analysis can be engaging for viewers and can enhance public understanding of the news.
Audiences are familiar with this format and, in our view, it would have shaped their expectations of the presenters and programme in this case.