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The 79-year-old presented the Graham Kennedy Award for most popular new talent to Dilruk Jayasinha – but it was Newton’s comments about the late entertainer Kennedy that stunned social media.
Speaking about his long career in entertainment, Newton made a reference to Kennedy and talk-show host Don Lane mentoring young talent ‘behind closed doors’ – a comment which had many Twitter users questioning whether Newton was possibly suggesting Kennedy was a sexual predator.
Hughesy: “I’ve made the entire room feel awkward by saying I love Don Burke!”
Bert Newton: “Hold my beer, I’ve got a story about Graham Kennedy mentoring young talent in his dressing room…”#Logies2018
— Petra Starke (@petstarr) July 1, 2018
Bert Newton is a legend so it’s seems churlish to be critical but his Graham Kennedy “joke” was odd and jarring, particularly in the context of presenting an award in Kennedy’s name. #Logies #logies2018
— Michael Byrnes (@MichaelByrnes) July 1, 2018