Royal Prank Call DJ’s Radio Show Cancelled After Nurse Suicide
The 2Day FM radio show presented by the two Australian DJ’s who hoax called the hospital where Kate, the Duchess of Cambridge, was being treated for acute morning sickness has been cancelled. A new show hosted by a different presenter will fill the same time slot.
2Day FM DJ’s, Mel Greig and Michael Christian, will remain employed by the radio station present, although for the moment they are still on leave, The Guardian reports.
Parent company, Southern Cross Austereo, which owns 2Day FM, released a statement via its chief executive, Rhys Holleran, saying:
“We look forward to Mel and Michael returning to work when the time is right, in roles that make full use of their talents – we will discuss future roles with them when they are ready.”
On December 4, Greig and Christian telephoned the Edward VII hospital where Kate was being treated for acute morning sickness.
During that call, in which the duo impersonated the Queen and Prince Charles, and they initially spoke to Nurse Jacintha Saldanha, 46, who transferred the call to the Duchess’ room on the ward.
As a result, details about Kate’s medical condition were divulged to the two DJ’s live and on-air by a second, unnamed nurse.
Three days later, Mrs. Saldanha was found hanged in her apartment in a nurses’ accomodation block near to the hospital. She left three suicide notes.
Edward VII hospital chief executive, John Lofthouse, subsequently told the press that Saldanha had been left “humiliated” by the call.
Following the death of the mother-of-two, an international blame game played out between 2Day FM parent company, Southern Austereo Cross, the Edward VII hospital, and the Saldanha family’s spokesman, Keith Vaz.
Amid a chorus of international condemnation, Greig and Christian received death threats and were forced into hiding. They subsequently made tearful public apologies on television but have been off air since and have received counseling, said The Telegraph.
It remains to be seen whether reports of Mrs. Saldanha’s alleged previous suicide attempts will affect the ongoing investigations by the Metropolitan police and Australia’s Communications and Media Authority into the conduct of Grieg and Christian and Southern Austereo Cross.