Nigel Farage joins GB News

Brexit hero Nigel Farage will present an evening politics show on GB News starting Monday. The new programme, simply called “Farage” is part of a wider relaunch scheduled for September. 

This morning, the former UKIP and Brexit Party leader put out a teaser, telling followers on social media he would announce the details of “a big career change” later in the day.

At 5pm Farage put up a brace of posts including a video in which he said firmly: “Broadcasting matters. It gets people to look at issues, think about issues in different ways, it can be very influential.” He went on to remind the public of his successful stint as a call-in host on LBC radio and his strong following on YouTube – where GB News is looking to attract more viewers.

“Often I’ve covered stories that everybody else wants to ignore,” added Farage. The hour-long show will be broadcast Monday to Thursday from 7pm.

“I’ll interview people who really understand their subject, not just some minister who’s just there to spout the party line,” assured Farage, adding, “I’m going to want your opinions too.”

In other comments, Farage slated mainstream broadcast media networks such as the BBC for peddling “propaganda”, adding, “they virtually agree on everything”. 

As such “the need for this channel is absolutely enormous,” insisted the former MEP. “Here it will be very, very different.” 

Farage’s announcement follows a bleak week for the fledgling broadcaster that began with head of news, John McAndrew announcing he was leaving. On Tuesday, contributing presenter, Guto Harri took a knee on air. The gesture is strongly linked with the Marxist Black Lives Matter movement. Following a backlash, the station issued an apology – Farage today vowed to “never take the knee”.

Yesterday the Guardian (one suspects rather gleefully) reported a GB News show aired during the day attracted zero viewers. 

Christian Mitchell, the channel’s executive producer and a former colleague of Farage’s at LBC, calmed concerns GB News was in freefall, citing the 200,000 people who had downloaded the app and a viral clip seen by 1.7 million people on Twitter.

“All start-ups are bumpy at the beginning and we expected this. Our technical issues have been frustrating but we’re solving them; other things are improving all the time,” Mitchell told the Express.

“People forget we are only five weeks old. BBC News is 98 years old; Sky News is 32 years old. They’ve had a long time to bed in. We are only just beginning to find our feet and it will take time but we know people are crying out for something different and we’re providing it, with real warmth and humour.

“We’re very excited about what we’re doing and even more excited about our future – we’re here for the long haul.”