Entertainment

Writer Scobie accused of ‘stunt to sell books’ over naming of race row royals

Piers Morgan has named the two race row royals (Stefan Rousseau/PA)
Piers Morgan has named the two race row royals (Stefan Rousseau/PA) Piers Morgan has named the two race row royals (Stefan Rousseau/PA)

Author Omid Scobie has been accused of being behind a “stunt to sell books” during a television interview where he claimed never to have named the two race row royals in his expose.

This Morning co-host Craig Doyle quizzed the journalist about his royal family book Endgame, saying it seemed “bizarre” to the public two members of the monarchy, accused of racism by commentators, had been identified in the Dutch version of his book.

Copies of Mr Scobie’s book were pulled from the shelves in the Netherlands on publication day on Tuesday after two members of the royal family alleged to have raised “concerns” about the skin colour of the Duke and Duchess of Sussex’s son were named in it.

The names were widely shared on social media.

Broadcaster Piers Morgan took the decision to name the pair on his TalkTV show on Wednesday night, saying the British public had a right to know as Dutch readers were aware of their identities.

Mr Doyle asked his guest how the names appeared in the Dutch version of Endgame: “That just seems bizarre to everybody out there because you don’t accidentally put in a name, and you can’t put it down to mistranslation, can you?

“It does feel like a stunt to sell books – which I understand.”

Sunday with Laura Kuenssberg
Sunday with Laura Kuenssberg Piers Morgan has named the two race row royals (Stefan Rousseau/PA)

Mr Scobie said he wrote the English language version of his book but does not speak the other languages it was translated into, “so the only time you hear about the book is once it’s come out in the public domain. I’m as frustrated as everyone else”.

He claimed: “The reality, though, is that this is information that is not privy just to me, journalists across Fleet Street have known those names for a long time.

“I have never submitted a book that had their names in it, so I can only talk about my version.”

In an interview with Oprah Winfrey in 2021, Harry and Meghan alleged an unidentified member of the monarchy – but not Queen Elizabeth II or her husband, the Duke of Edinburgh – had raised “concerns and conversations about how dark his skin might be when he’s born”.

Mr Scobie states in his book that two people, not one as Meghan said, made the comment about Archie, widely interpreted as a racist remark.