Great Britain

Dancing on Ice’s Ashley Banjo defends Rufus Hound’s political dig – and slams Ofcom complaints as ‘nonsense’

'his prerogative'

DANCING on Ice judge Ashley Banjo has defended Rufus Hound after he got backlash for making a political dig on the show.

The new ITV series was hit with hundreds of Ofcom complaints over the comic's comment, which Ashley has dismissed as "nonsense".

Rufus sparked fury when he was handed a golden ticket after being saved from the public vote by the judges. He said: "We live in a world where the people we elect don't want to feed hungry kids, so this is the least mad thing that has happened in a long time."

The star was referencing recent fury after the Government's "£30 food parcels" for children who receive free school meals were exposed as being wholly inadequate on social media last week.

Responding to disgruntled viewers who slammed Rufus for bringing politics into their Sunday evening viewing, Ashley said: "It was absolutely appropriate.

"He is a comedian, an emotional man who takes cues from the real world around him to form an opinion. That's what we all do.

"He said something in response to the way he felt and of course he's allowed to say it. That is his prerogative. 

"If people do or don't agree, the idea that people can't express their opinion because the show is a 'family' show, I think is nonsense.

"I think what people are saying by 'family' show is that they only want opinions on TV that they agree with, that's a different thing.

"I didn't reach out to him for support because I didn't need to.

"Rufus isn't in need of support. He knows what he said and that was his opinion. He is absolutely fine."

Rufus' words sparked outrage at the time, with fans flocking to Twitter to slam the comic for making the family show "political".

The official TV regulator has revealed the number of complaints that have poured in.

"We also received complaints about Holly’s dress, and the set-up of the programme given Corona rules."

Dancing On Ice's Rufus Hound fits back tears as he's handed judges' golden ticket to musical week

Football news:

Cavani has returned to training and is likely to play against Crystal Palace
Fabio Capello, Juventus played Rugby against the Port. Only Ronaldo and Chiesa can make a difference in this squad
Neymar: I posted how I was recovering from my injury, and I didn't get any messages saying, Wow, what a professional. No
Ole Gunnar Solscher: The work of the judges is very difficult and without additional pressure. We have to make their decisions
Joan Laporta: I'm sure Messi won't stay at Barca if I don't win the election. He gives the club 30% of revenue
Trent had idolized Gerrard since he was a kid, and he was in a fairy tale: he got Steven's care and the captain's armband. The story of a great relationship
Hazard's recovery from the injury is delayed. He probably won't play against Atletico on March 7