Michelle Guthrie Considering Legal Action After Shock Axing From Top ABC Job

Ousted ABC managing director Michelle Guthrie has responded to her shock axing, saying she is “devastated” at the decision made by the national broadcaster’s board of directors and is currently considering her legal options.

In a statement shared online by Australian Financial Review political editor Phillip Coorey, Guthrie said she was saddened by the call to end her five-year term as managing director halfway through “despite no claim of wrongdoing on my part.”

Guthrie escalated her rhetoric from there, acknowledging that her contract included a clause permitting the board to oust her “without cause and with immediate effect”, but claimed there was no clear reason for them to do so.

“I am considering my legal options,” Guthrie said.

The former Google executive said at no time had her plan to modernise the ABC come under fire, and that she had been effective in delivering on her state goals of shaking up Aunty.

The stunning statement comes after Prime Minister Scott Morrison said he was informed of the decision to axe Guthrie last night by Communications Minister Mitch Fifield.

Morrison said it wasn’t his place to comment on the efficacy of Guthrie as managing director, again pointing to the board as the folks in charge of that call.

“I want to see an ABC that’s strong and doing its job and well run, and the board does as well,” Morrison said.

“That’s what they’re responsible for, and I’ll hold them to account for that.”

Watch this space.