The Australian ABC news anchor who was caught live on air fiddling with a pen before gasping in front of viewers has slammed the network and quashed rumours the viral gaffe was a publicity stunt.
Presenter Natasha Exelby told The Daily Telegraph, "People give me way too much credit ... and I should have been an actor", in defence of the gaffe which she said was accidental.
Ms Exelby is now working in crisis management and consultancy after she cut ties with ABC.
She said she "strenuously rejected any conduct claims" after rumours circulated she was banned from performing on air roles by the network.
"Even though they (the ABC) didn't do the right thing by me I wanted to do the right thing by them."
Politicians, broadcasters and the public jumped to her defence posting online and uploading their own on-air gaffes, however ABC denied banning Ms Exelby.
ABC told Nine News that Ms Exelby can return to the network if she wanted to.
"Natasha Exelby has chosen not to do some casual shifts she was rostered for," an ABC spokesperson said in a statement.
"Natasha was not taken off-air because of a 'blooper' and ABC News has been clear that we're open to working with her again, including the possibility of future presenting shifts."
"The Government has to balance pay demands across the public sector. We have gone as far as we can in terms of extra Government money," Dr Clark said this afternoon.