BBC chief resigns after investigation into Boris Johnson’s secondment

BBC chief resigns after investigation into Boris Johnson's secondment
Richard Sharp

NOS News

Richard Sharpe is stepping down as head of the BBC. He has now resigned after an investigation by the British regulator found he broke the rules because he helped then-Prime Minister Boris Johnson secure a loan shortly before his appointment.

The committee launched the investigation after an article in the Sunday Times newspaper. It stated that Sharp was to arrange a loan of 800,000 pounds (900,000 euros) for Johnson. The then UK Prime Minister would have been in financial difficulty in 2021. Sharp would have guaranteed this loan while he was already in the process of applying to become chairman of the BBC.

No conflict of interest

The loan came from wealthy Canadian businessman Sam Blythe, a distant cousin of Johnson’s. Sharpe, a former banker and donor to Johnson’s party, arranged a meeting between Blythe and the UK’s chief civil servant to discuss the loan.

When the story came out, Sharp denied any conflict of interest. According to him, it “only brought people into contact with each other.”

According to the British regulator, the fact that he broke the rules is not a reason for Sharp’s resignation. However, he does so because carrying on with it “distracts from the good work of the BBC”. He wants to continue doing his job until June, so that the BBC has time to look for a suitable successor.

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