News Release 11 April 2016 for immediate use
LAUNCH OF INDEPENDENT INQUIRY INTO: “THE PUBLIC & THE BBC; WHAT ROLE IN OVERSIGHT & GOVERNANCE?”
Save Our BBC with support from Cardiff University have launched an inquiry to examine the proper role of the public and the licence fee payers in the future governance of the BBC. How should the licence fee payers, members of the radio or tv audiences and users of BBC services fit directly into the way the BBC will work in future? Who in the new governance arrangements for the BBC will have a direct accountable relationship with the BBC’s main stakeholders – those who pay for it, watch it, listen to it and use it?
Are the proposals for people to be appointed by either the Government or the Public Appointments Unit as Non-Executive Directors and leading regulators at Ofcom appropriate or sufficiently independent? Where is the transparency and accountability in the proposed arrangements?
In the 21st century there are increasing expectations for public transparency and accountability of our institutions. How should these expectations be met in the oversight of the BBC? How can full independence from political interference be delivered and defended?
This gap has not been addressed by Sir David Clementi’s report. The Government says its White Paper about the BBC’s future will be published ‘by the summer’. So we are undertaking this Inquiry rapidly so that our findings can be taken into account.
We are gathering written evidence. We want submissions from individual licence fee payers, members of the BBC’s audiences and users of its services and from media, academic and civil organisations by 5 May 2016.
We will also be holding one or two sessions when, by invitation, we will take oral evidence from a few key organisations and people.
The full details, terms of reference and contact details for this Inquiry are appended.