Former BBC chief hits back at Norwich MP Clive Lewis’ “institutional racism” claims

Clive Lewis worked for the BBC before standing and winning the Norwich South seat for Labour this ye

Clive Lewis worked for the BBC before standing and winning the Norwich South seat for Labour this year. Photo: Steve Adams - Credit: Archant

Norwich South Labour MP Clive Lewis has come under fire from former bosses at BBC East after accusing the corporation of racism.

Mr Lewis claimed his career at Look East, which spanned 10 years, was held back because of his colour.

Former BBC East boss Tim Bishop, who now runs The Forum in Norwich, said Mr Lewis' claims were 'rubbish' and he owed an apology to his former colleagues.

He added: 'Quite a number of BBC East staff members have contacted me to say how disgusted they are at the remarks, which are deeply offensive.

'His career at the BBC was not wrecked by racism, quite the opposite.

'He was appointed on merit, as were several ethnic minority presenters who are now familiar faces to Look East viewers.

'Mr Lewis was appointed as our political correspondent – a far more significant role than the job as presenter which he claimed he was denied.'

Mr Bishop said the MP was removed from this post due to his lack of political knowledge and his inability to do the role to the level required.

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He added he thought Mr Lewis 'owes everybody at Look East an apology'.