The CBC and Jian Ghomeshi are parting ways after the broadcaster received "information" about its star radio host, it revealed in a surprise announcement Sunday afternoon.
"This decision was not made without serious deliberation and careful consideration. Jian has made an immense contribution to the CBC and we wish him well," the broadcaster said in a statement.
CBC spokesman Chuck Thompson added only that "information came to our attention recently that in CBC's judgment precludes us from continuing our relationship with Jian Ghomeshi.''
UPDATE: Late Sunday night, the Toronto Star published a story by investigative reporter Kevin Donovan and Canadaland's Jesse Brown detailing the allegations against Ghomeshi. The Star said it had interviewed three young women who say Ghomeshi "physically attacked them on dates without consent."
The Star reports that Ghomeshi, through his lawyer, has said he “does not engage in non-consensual role play or sex and any suggestion of the contrary is defamatory.”
Thompson would not say Sunday afternoon what that information is, according to CBC News. "Whenever a decision is made to end a relationship with an employee, terms of separation are never disclosed."
Within two hours of the CBC's statement, lawyers for Ghomeshi sent out a press release indicating he plans to sue the broadcaster for "breach of confidence and bad faith."
The statement said Ghomeshi, who hosted the popular radio show "Q," plans to file suit on Monday morning for $50 million.
It also says Ghomeshi will commence a grievance for reinstatement with the CBC under his collective agreement.
Thompson said in an email to the Canadian Press that if the CBC is served with legal documents it will contest the lawsuit vigorously.
On Sunday afternoon, Ghomeshi posted a lengthy statement on his Facebook page addressing the split from CBC, saying "I’ve been fired from the CBC because of the risk of my private sex life being made public as a result of a campaign of false allegations pursued by a jilted ex girlfriend and a freelance writer."
Ghomeshi also writes: "Let me be the first to say that my tastes in the bedroom may not be palatable to some folks. They may be strange, enticing, weird, normal, or outright offensive to others. We all have our secret life. But that is my private life. That is my personal life. And no one, and certainly no employer, should have dominion over what people do consensually in their private life." (Read the full statement.)
The Globe and Mail reports that Ghomeshi has hired the services of Navigator, a "high-stakes public strategy and communications firm."
On Friday, it was reported that the host would be taking an indefinite leave from the CBC for "personal issues."
Organizers for the Scotiabank Giller Prize, a literary award, tweeted Sunday saying Ghomeshi would no longer be hosting the award gala on Nov. 10.
In a piece in The Globe and Mail earlier this month, the radio personality wrote that his heart was "broken" over the recent death of his father.
It wasn't immediately clear what would happen to "Q,"' a daily national talk show on CBC Radio One and CBC-TV featuring interviews with celebrities and prominent international figures which Ghomeshi co-created.
His last day in the host's chair was Thursday.
The cultural affairs program, which launched in 2007 also, is broadcast on over 180 NPR/PRI stations and syndicated in the U.S. American media including Gawker also published stories about Ghomeshi's departure.
The Toronto-based Ghomeshi, 47, is a published author, with the 2012 memoir "1982'" and articles in various papers. He also hosted the CBC-TV program "Play."
With files from The Canadian Press
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