UPDATE: Southern Cross Austereo, the network that ran the radio show held by Mel Greig and Michael Christian, has confirmed in a statement that the two Australian DJs “will not return to the airwaves until further notice” and that their show has been cancelled. The rest of the story continues below.
Michael Christian and Mel Greig, the two Australian DJs who prank called King Edward VII Hospital and pretended to be Queen Elizabeth II asking for Kate Middleton, have spoken out publicly for the first time since the receptionist who answered the call, Jacintha Saldanha, committed suicide.
“I’m still trying to make sense of it all,” Christian tells Australia’s “A Current Affair” following the incident, adding that he was “shattered” and “heartbroken” by it all. He and Greig describe the prank call as “routine for us” and say it had been put through “every filter that everything goes through” before they made it, and that they couldn’t have predicted what happened next. Both have been off the air since Saldanha’s death was announced.
What did come next was surprising for most, as the duo was patched through to Kate Middleton‘s room without issue when they prank called the hospital recently. The DJs phoned King Edward VII Hospital and pretended to be the queen looking to talk with the Duchess of Cambridge. Saldanha immediately connected them to Middleton’s room, and it was there that a nurse told Christian and Greig confidential information about the pregnant royal’s condition. The entire incident was aired on their radio station. The DJs admit now that they had no idea the prank would go this far and regret what has happened as a result of it.
“There’s not a minute that goes by that we don’t think about the family and what they must be going through and the thought we may have played a part in that is discouraging,” Greig says through tears. “I want to just to reach out to them and give them a hug and say sorry, and I hope they’re okay, I really do.”
Christian adds, “Naturally we’re shattered. We’re people too.”
Saldanka was found dead of apparent suicide a few days after the call was made.