Corbyn hits out at media over 'failings' to ensure opposition voice heard

Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn has lashed out at the media over what he says are its “failings” in reporting on his party’s actions and its “obsession” with asking him about quitting his role.

The Islington North MP also said it was the media’s “responsibility to make sure the opposition voice is heard as well as the Government’s voice”.

Corbyn made the remarks during an interview with ITV News political correspondent Paul Brand which aired yesterday.

See the full exchange below

Brand: “If you are so concerned about what the Conservative government is doing to Britain, wouldn’t it be an idea to step aside and allow someone else to lead Labour?

Corbyn: “You are obsessed with this question, if I may say so, utterly obsessed with it.”

Brand: “Isn’t it an important obsession to have a strong opposition in Britain? And people are asking whether you can provide that.

Corbyn: “We have a very strong opposition in Britain if you bothered to report what we were doing.

“If you bothered to report what John Ashworth was doing on the health service, if you bothered to report what Angela Rayner is doing and saying on schools, if you bothered to report what the labour party is actually saying.

“It’s your responsibility to make sure that the opposition voice is heard as well as the government’s voice. It’s your failings.

Brand: “I can tell that you’re frustrated with the number of times you are asked about your leadership, but I guess that gets to the heart of my question which is aren’t you just fed up with this?

Corbyn: “The heart of your question is that you haven’t got a question other than that. Let me tell you what these elections are about: housing, education, social care. Those are pretty serious and pretty crucial issues.

“Labour in local government has done a great deal to provide good services for many people in this country.”

This isn’t the first time Corbyn has pointed a finger at the media.

In February he accused the BBC of reporting “fake news” after he was questioned on BBC Breakfast over rumours he was planning to step down as Labour leader.

Corbyn said the claims came from “imadeitupyesterday.com” and said it was “absolute nonsense”, adding: “I’m really surprised the BBC is reporting fake news. There is no news.”

In January the BBC Trust upheld an accuracy complaint against the BBC News at Six and political editor Laura Kuenssberg over a report which said Corbyn rejected a “shoot to kill” policy in the event of Paris-style terror attacks.

Picture: Reuters/Russell Cheyne 

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