Pop manager Louis Walsh has launched an astonishing attack on RTE in which he called for the state broadcaster to be sold off and shut down.
Branding the station's top personalities as “the same old faces”, he compared management at the Republic’s national broadcaster to civil servants and claimed they should all be sacked.
“RTE need new faces and new attitude. They launched their new schedule and it was the same old faces who I'm fed up of looking at. RTE is the civil service. It's a big building with all these people doing nothing. RTE should be sold off and the people running it sacked, “ he said.
The 58-year-old made the comments at the launch of rival station TV3's autumn schedule in which he features as a judge on ITV reality show X Factor.
Walsh contrasted the success of the independent broadcaster, now the second most watched TV station in Ireland ahead of RTE2, and that of the state broadcaster.
“How are TV3 so successful when they have a smaller budget and only one little studio? While all the time RTE are losing millions and millions. They call RTE ‘the station of the cross'. God knows it's true. We have all been suffering for years. It has to end soon. Please,” he added.
The Westlife manager's comments come after TV3 announced a three-year plan to build the first high definition studio in Ireland to close the gap on RTE1.