TEHRAN, Young Journalists Club (YJC) - "On Monday night, we received a detailed complaint from a colleague about inappropriate sexual behavior in the workplace by Matt Lauer. As a result, we've decided to terminate his employment," Andrew Lack, the NBC News president, said in a memo to the staff on Wednesday.
"Today" co-anchors Savannah Guthrie and Hoda Kotb told viewers during Wednesday’s show that they were processing his departure but did not yet know all of the details.
'This is a sad morning here at Today and NBC News,' said a tearful Guthrie while revealing the news at the start of the popular morning show.
Lauer allegedly sexually assaulted a female NBC staffer during the Sochi Winter Olympics in 2014, sources told the website Page Six.
Last year, Lauer signed a new contract with the network worth a reported $20 million per year.
The move by NBC represents one of the few examples of a company taking pre-emptive action over sexual harassment complaints before any allegations had become public.
US President Donald Trump went to twitter over the issue and said: “Wow, Matt Lauer was just fired from NBC for ‘inappropriate sexual behavior in the workplace.'”“But when will the top executives at NBC & Comcast be fired for putting out so much Fake News.
Check out Andy Lack’s past!” referring to the chairman of NBC News.
Some also brought up Trump’s history of sexual misconduct claims. “Sad to realize that entertainment companies like CBS and NBC have a higher standard for conduct than a lot of voters in America,” Yvette Nicole Brown, American actress and comedian, tweeted.
Last week, CBS sacked Charlie Rose, one of its leading anchors, amid allegations of sexual misconduct. In April, Fox News sacked its best-known presenter, Bill O'Reilly.
Last October, Billy Bush left The Today Show after a tape emerged of him making lewd comments with Trump in 2005.