Speaking publicly for the first time since she was sacked from the ABC, former managing director Michelle Guthrie has detailed explosive allegations about her relationship breakdown with the board and the former chair, Justin Milne, report ABC’s Sarah Ferguson and Patricia Drum.
In the Four Corners investigation, Guthrie and Milne made claims and counterclaims about alleged political interference and pressure to fire journalists at the national broadcaster.
Guthrie was sacked from the ABC in late September and just days later Milne resigned in the face of allegations of political interference.
Guthrie alleged that Milne touched her inappropriately, rubbing her back, while they were at a board dinner at Sydney restaurant Billy Kwong in November 2017. Milne categorically denies the claim.
“Inappropriate touching is the best description of it,” Guthrie said.
“I felt icky. It was inappropriate. It was unprofessional and inappropriate.
“It didn’t have an effect on my professional relationship with him, but it was certainly in [my] mind that in social settings… I tried to avoid putting myself into situations where that might recur.”
Milne insists the incident never happened.
The bitter feud is not over. Guthrie is suing the ABC and Milne and has pointed out to Four Corners one possible outcome of her legal action is reinstatement as managing director and a return to the ABC.
Photo via ABC