Ex-BBC boss blasts Hutton

The newly-resigned boss of the BBC, Greg Dyke, lashed out on Friday at a senior judge whose inquiry severely criticised the public broadcaster while letting the government off the hook.

    A majority of people think Hutton's report was a whitewash

    Speaking on BBC radio and GMTV television the day after he quit as BBC director general, Dyke criticised judge Brian Hutton's report into the July suicide of weapons expert David Kelly, essentially accusing it of lacking in balance.

    "It's remarkable how he's given the benefit of judgment to virtually everyone in the government and virtually no one in the BBC," Dyke said on BBC radio's Today programme. 

    "We were shocked that it was so black and white," he added in an interview with the commercial GMTV channel. "We knew mistakes had been made by us but we didn't believe they were only by us." 

    Going further, he accused Hutton - one of the most senior jurists in Britain - of committing errors.

    "I would be very interested in what a few other law lords on looking at Hutton thought of it," he said on GMTV. "We have an opinion that there are points of law in there where he is quite clearly wrong." 

    Report a 'whitewash'

    Meanwhile, the majority of Britons - 56% - think a judicial inquiry which probed the suicide of arms expert David Kelly and exonerated Prime Minister Tony Blair of wrongdoing was a "whitewash", according to a poll published Friday. 

    "It's remarkable how he's given the benefit of judgment to virtually everyone in the government and virtually no one in the BBC"

    Greg Dyke,
    Former boss of BBC

    Despite senior judge Lord Hutton's inquiry rapping the BBC for a faulty story on Iraqi weapons, the YouGov survey for the Daily Telegraph found that 67 percent of people trusted the BBC to tell the truth, compared with 31 percent who trusted the government. 

    A separate ICM survey for the Guardian daily found that just one in 10 had faith in Blair's administration compared with 31%who trusted the BBC.

    However, almost half, 49%, trusted neither side, the ICM survey of 532 people found.

    SOURCE: AFP


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