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Deputy Minister for the Economy, Lee Waters (Lab, Llanelli), raised objections with Ofcom over a decision by BBC Wales to change the format of morning programming on BBC Radio Wales.
Good Morning Wales has been dropped and will be replaced with what’s described as a “magazine-style show”, presented by Claire Summers, which will provide news but will also focus on lighter subject matter.
The Deputy Minister, alongside many other AMs, voiced concerns that this will lead to a reduction in current affairs and political content for Welsh audiences.
“I think the editorial independence of the BBC is very important but we think the Welsh media ecosystem is so fragile that, after some consideration, we felt it was justified.
“If Good Morning Wales does not exist, or an equivalent serious news programme does not exist, there would be no serious news programme for Wales on the radio in that agenda-setting slot.”
– Deputy Minister for Economy & Transport, Lee Waters
In an unusual and unprecedented step, this stance has been officially adopted by the Welsh Government. However, Deputy Minister for Culture, Dafydd Elis-Thomas (Ind, Dwyfor Meirionnydd) – who’s notionally responsible for broadcasting policy – said it “wasn’t my opinion at all” adding that it wasn’t his place to interfere in editorial decisions by broadcasters.