An OFCOM investigation has been launched following an appearance by Prime Minister Rishi Sunak on GB News in Darlington which garnered 500 complaints.

The broadcast, named the People's Forum: The Prime Minister on GB News, aired on February 12 and garnered a cross-section of voters from County Durham.

The PM said “It’s been a tough couple of years” on the show where he was grilled on the upcoming general election, the NHS, Rwanda and Covid-19 vaccines.

The Northern Echo: Rishi Sunak.Rishi Sunak. (Image: GB News)

However, since its broadcast, around 500 complaints have been made to OFCOM regarding impartiality, and the watchdog has now confirmed that an investigation has been launched.

An OFCOM statement said: "Ofcom has launched an investigation into People’s Forum: The Prime Minister on GB News under our due impartiality rules.

"We have received around 500 complaints about the programme which aired on GB News on 12 February 2024.

"We are investigating under Rules 5.11 and 5.12 of the Broadcasting Code which provide additional due impartiality requirements for programmes dealing with matters of major political controversy and major matters relating to current public policy.

"Specifically, Rules 5.11 and 5.12 require that an appropriately wide range of significant views must be included and given due weight in such programmes, or in clearly linked and timely programmes."

The Northern Echo: Rishi Sunak.Rishi Sunak. (Image: GB News)

During the show, Mr Sunak defended his tenure heading into a general election later this year, as he addressed a roomful of voters.

Switching between attacking Labour and defending the Tories’ record, he warned “undecided voters” that choosing to vote Labour will be going “back to square one”.

Questioned on the NHS, he said: “I don’t need to tell you the damage that Covid has done to so many things in our country, but particularly it’s caused backlogs in the NHS.

“Whoever was prime minister, whoever was standing here tonight, there will be backlogs in the NHS because of what happened. You all know that you are fair-minded people.”

Mr Sunak said the Government was investing “more money than the NHS has ever had”, and large numbers of doctors and nurses were being trained for the long term.

He added: “I probably will not be around in the 14 years that it takes to train the consultant that we’re now starting to invest in, but it’s the right long-term thing to do for our country, which is why I’ve done it.”

Mr Sunak was also forced to defend the Rwanda plan, as peers in the House of Lords debated the flagship policy aimed at stopping migrant crossings in the Channel.


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One voter pressed him on why he was “so adamant” about the Rwanda policy “when public documentation shows it isn’t working and that it’s not going to work”.

The Prime Minister responded: “In order to fully solve this problem, we need a deterrent.

“We need to be able to say pretty simply and unequivocally that if you come to our country illegally, you won’t get to stay.”

The Prime Minister has been contacted for comment.