MEMBER for Farrer Sussan Ley says she was at last month’s Sydney dinner where radio announcer Alan Jones was a guest speaker but did not hear his comments about the death of Prime Minister Julia Gillard’s father.
Ms Ley yesterday joined Opposition Leader Tony Abbott, Liberal frontbencher Malcolm Turnbull and NSW Premier Barry O’Farrell in condemning Jones, who told his audience at a Young Liberals dinner that Ms Gillard’s late father John had “died a few weeks ago from shame” over Ms Gillard’s political career.
Mr Gillard died on September 8, aged 83.
Ms Ley said she had attended the Sydney function on September 22 in support of the NSW Young Liberals and Jones was the guest speaker.
“I did not actually hear the comments reported in today’s press and was not aware of them until this morning,” she said in a statement made from Western Australia yesterday.
“The remarks about the PM were unacceptable and were completely out of line.
“It’s a good thing that Alan Jones has recognised this and apologised.”
But Radio 2AY general manager and group program director for Ace Broadcasters Mark Taylor said the station would gauge the reaction of talkback callers to Jones’ program this week to determine whether it should continue to be broadcast by the Border station.
HAVE YOUR SAY: Do you want to hear Alan Jones on 2AY? Leave a comment below.
“I think, like most people, I was a bit gobsmacked by what he said,” Mr Taylor said.
“His is a polarising hour of radio, with 50 per cent of the audience liking him and 50 per cent not liking him.
“There certainly is an opportunity for us to review the program.”