BBC apologises to Penneys for fake child labour footage
The BBC has had to apologise to cut-price fashion giant Primark, which trades as Penneys here, after a three year inquiry revealed that the broadcaster used faked images of child labour in a Panorama expose.
The BBC Trust found that footage of three boys working in terrible conditions in Bangalore, India were “more likely than not not genuine” and evidence of the fakery was in the BBC’s possession before the programme was aired.
Primark was forced to fire three Indian suppliers for supposedly using child labour to finish Primark goods following the programme ‘Primark on the Rack’ which was broadcast on June 23, 2008.
Primark, whose chairman is Dublin-born Arthur Ryan, said it welcomed the apology and hoped that the findings of the BBC Trust would lead to better standards of editorial control and balance in documentary-making at the BBC.
A Primark spokesman said: “The confirmation that faked material was broadcast by Panorama is extraordinary.
“Millions of people have been deceived by Panorama”, he added.
“Viewers who watched the programme, shoppers who were then fed the lie, sourcing experts who believed the lie, teachers and pupils who viewed the programme in lessons, have all been badly let down.”