ABC takes newsreader Juanita Phillips off air due to concerns over Combet ‘conflict’

The ABC decided not to put Sydney newsreader Juanita Phillips to air on Friday over concerns about a conflict of interest with her reading a story involving her partner, cabinet minister Greg Combet.

Mumbrella understands that as late as 4.30pm on Friday afternoon Phillips was slated to read the news bulletin however shortly before the broadcast, management chose to replace her with Scott Bevan.

A spokeswoman for the ABC confirmed the decision to Mumbrella: “As with any situation involving ABC editorial staff, we consider and manage conflicts on a common sense, case by case basis.”

“In this case ABC News decided that to address any perceived conflict of interest it was appropriate to reallocate staff for Friday night’s bulletin.” 

The ABC did not elaborate on the exact nature of the conflict of interest.

On Friday climate change minister Greg Combet was called to appear before the Independent Commission Against Corruption and asked questions about his involvement with former CFMEU boss John Maitland.

Combet and Phillips’ relationship first made headlines back in late 2012.

Nic Christensen 


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