A spokesman for the US Presidential Inauguration Committee has confirmed that a prayer by Bishop Gene Robinson was supposed to be televised as part of a celebration concert on Sunday.

Broadcaster HBO had been criticised for excluding the invocation by Bishop Robinson, who is one of the most prominent LGBT people in America.

There were accusations that he had been censored, as HBO began transmitting live from the We Are One concert ten minutes after the prayer.

A crowd of 500,000 people gathered in front of the Lincoln Memorial in Washington DC had trouble hearing Bishop Robinson due to problems with speakers.

Inaugural Committee spokesman Josh Earnest told Politico:

“We had always intended and planned for Rt. Rev. Robinson’s invocation to be included in the televised portion of Sunday’s programme.

“We regret the error in executing this plan – but are gratified that hundreds of thousands of people who gathered on the mall heard his eloquent prayer for our nation that was a fitting start to our event.”

Barack Obama will take the oath of office during an inauguration ceremony in Washington this afternoon.