1. After almost 20 years and 156 episodes, the ABC has announced it will cease production of Bananas in Pyjamas because of funding issues.
The head of children’s content, Tim Brooke-Hunt told Fairfax: “It is a matter of money. Although we have been nicely treated by the government in the context of funding of our school-age channel, ABC3, the reality is that ABC4Kids (on ABC2), is funded from the previously existing, general allocation for the ABC.”
The show, featuring B1 and B2, has been shown in 130 countries around the world. Reruns of the show will continue to play.
2. The family of Jacintha Saldahna – the British nurse who took her own life after falling victim to an Australian radio prank – have expressed their shock that one of the DJs behind the prank has been commended for his work.
Michael Christian was this week awarded the “top jock” gong from Australian radio network Austero. Earlier this year, Christian was part of the two-person team who called a UK hospital pretending to be the queen and asking to speak with Kate Middleton.
Jacintha Saldahna was the nurse who took their call and put them through to the Duchess of Cambridge’s ward. She later committed suicide when the news became public.
Speaking on behalf of the Saldahna family, British Labour MP Keith Vaz said: “The giving of this award to Michael Christian is distasteful and disgraceful so soon after the tragic death of Jacintha… It sends out completely the wrong message at the wrong time for the wrong reasons.”=
3. A Brisbane hospital is in crisis mode after two reported cases of legionnaires disease linked to the facility. A 60-year-old man died over the weekend and another woman is reportedly fighting for her life in intensive care. Wesley Hospital has reportedly stopped taking admissions while it investigates. Authorities say that the bacteria has been found in the hot water system.
4. In the latest news from the British phone hacking scandal, Rebekah Brooks – the former chief executive of News International – has pleaded not guilty to charges including phone hacking, conspiracy to commit misconduct and conspiracy to pervert the course of justice.