Letter: Birt and Hussey threaten the integrity of the BBC

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The Independent Online
Sir: James Fenton misses the point in his article on tax avoidance at the BBC (15 March). The real issue is the question of Marmaduke Hussey's accountability to the Board of Governors and his capacity to defend the integrity of the corporation. What Mr Hussey and John Birt have failed to understand is why their behaviour has so angered both the public and the staff of the corporation. They were trusted to uphold the BBC's traditional standards of openness and honesty, and they have betrayed that trust.

In the run-up to the renegotiation of the BBC Charter, the corporation must be led by people committed to the concept of public service rather than personal gain - and who understand their responsibility to those who pay the licence fee.

Yours sincerely,

JOHN C. FOSTER

General Secretary

National Union of Journalists

London, WC1

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