Piers Morgan pulls out of hosting RTS awards following campaign to ban him

The campaign claimed it was "not acceptable" for Morgan to host the Royal Television Society (RTS) Programme Awards.

Piers Morgan has pulled out of hosting a TV awards ceremony following a campaign to have him ousted from the event.

After Morgan was announced as host of this year’s Royal Television Society (RTS) Programme Awards, a Change.org petition to have him removed was launched. The petition, which argued that it was “not acceptable” for Morgan to host the ceremony, attracted 193 signatures.

Bonnie Greer, one of the RTS Programme Awards’ judges, said on Twitter that she had decided not to attend the ceremony after learning that Morgan had been asked to host.

Announcing his decision to withdraw from the event, Morgan said in a statement on Facebook: “I was recently invited to host the Royal Television Society Programme Awards. As someone who has worked in British and American television for most of this Millennium, on a variety of shows, I thought it might be fun and agreed to do it without any fee.”

He continued: “After my role was announced, a campaign was started to have me banned. It suggested that I lack the ‘creative excellence’ criteria required for presenting such an event and therefore my presence would be ‘damaging’ and ‘inappropriate.’ Further, I have ‘failed to understand a social movement that values equality and diversity of voice.'”

“Apparently, this movement does not extend to tolerating my own diverse voice,” he added. “I have no wish to serve as an unnecessary distraction from award winners whose hard work and skill should be celebrated without any of the silly noise this campaign has generated. So, I am now withdrawing from hosting the evening. Good luck to everyone who has been nominated.”

Piers Morgan

Morgan, who presents Good Morning Britain on weekday mornings, has become an increasingly controversial figure in recent months, largely because of his vocal support for Donald Trump.

Ewan McGregor recently refused to appear on the ITV morning show after he learned that Morgan, who had spoken out against the recent Women’s March, was one of its presenters.

Morgan has also been involved in a high-profile Twitter spat with Harry Potter author JK Rowling, who succeeded in trolling him with his own words last week.