The BBC has responded to criticism it faced after a recent episode of the CBeebies show Magic Hands featured a Michael Jackson track.
The children’s show, which has been hailed for performing poems and songs in British Sign Language, faced backlash after a song by The Jackson 5 featured in a recent episode.
It aired on March 18, and featured characters Mae and Mia as they performed ‘ABC’ with Leapy Lion.
But parents questioned the decision to include the song after recent documentary Leaving Neverland detailed extensive child abuse allegations against Michael Jackson.
Mum Stephanie Mara-Cole told The Sun: “I was watching Magic Hands with my two-year-old son and was pretty shocked that the entire episode was based around a song sung by Michael Jackson.
“I watched Leaving Neverland and couldn’t believe CBeebies hadn’t pulled it from the schedule.
“Given all the vile things Michael Jackson has been accused of doing to children, it actually make my skin crawl to hear the song.”
Responding to the criticism, the BBC pointed out that the episode featured a performance from the show’s production team and not the original Jackson 5 track.
In a statement to The Sun, a spokesperson for the BBC said: “This song was recorded and performed by the programme’s own production for a programme specifically designed for deaf and hard of hearing children.”
It comes after Leaving Neverland aired last month and immediately divided opinion.
While some of Jackson’s most ardent fans have continued to defend him, radio stations across the globe have opted to ban Jackson’s music.
His family recently responded to criticism of the late star in a new documentary.