A Current Affair rejects Malaysian journalists suggestions its report was ‘bad journalism’

The executive producer of Channel Nine’s A Current Affair has rejected suggestions by Malaysian journalists its report featuring two teenage girls who raised questions about the cockpit behaviour of two Malaysia Airlines pilots, one of whom was on board the missing MH370 flight, was hearsay and “bad journalism”.

In the report, two Australian girls described spending some time in the cockpit with the pilots some weeks ago as “a bit sleazy” and said that the two men -one of whom was allegedly First Officer Fariq Abdul Hamid, who was on board MH370 – were smoking during the flight.

Yesterday Mumbrella Asia reported on comments made to a Malaysian online site with one describing the report as “hearsay” and another adding saying: “It made me cringe to see the way the girls told their story. It is bad journalism, but then again Australian media is known for such behaviour.”

ACA executive producer Grant Williams has rejected the accusations in a statement which read: “Our report was very plainly not ‘hearsay’ since it carried pictures of the event itself and a first person account of what actually happened.

“The young woman also made it clear she was not suggesting there was anything unsafe about the co-pilot’s behaviour. Countless theories have been reported by media organisations worldwide as to the possible circumstances relating to the ill-fated MH370.

“Our story simply demonstrated that one of the flight crew had a history of allowing civilians into the cockpit during flight, a practice which is prohibited. We considered that a legitimate factor worthy of mention as the story continues to unfold.”

The Malaysian Digest printed comments from Datuk Johan Jaafar who said: “It doesn’t matter where the news came from but this principle is the same for all journalists everywhere. It is an unwritten rule that should serve as a guideline for all newsman [sic].”

“MAS [Malaysia Airlines] has to get the other pilot in the video to explain what actually went down that day.”


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