BBC head of news "steps aside" over abuse scandal

LONDON Mon Nov 12, 2012 2:42pm IST

The microphone that newsreader used to deliver the final BBC World Service news bulletin from BBC Bush House is seen in central London July 12, 2012. REUTERS/Suzanne Plunkett

The microphone that newsreader used to deliver the final BBC World Service news bulletin from BBC Bush House is seen in central London July 12, 2012.

Credit: Reuters/Suzanne Plunkett

LONDON (Reuters) - The two most senior figures at BBC News stepped aside on Monday a day after the chairman of the broadcaster's governing body said it needed a radical overhaul to survive a child sex abuse scandal, it said.

Helen Boaden, the director of BBC News, and her deputy Steve Mitchell, stepped aside two days after the director general quit to take the blame for the airing of false child sex abuse allegations against a former politician.

The BBC's press office said it could not yet confirm the news but the BBC said on its news website that there would be an announcement later in the day.

The development is the latest blow to the corporation, which has been thrown into turmoil by revelations about a historic child sex abuse scandal and the broadcaster's problems with reporting the issue.

George Entwistle resigned as general director on Saturday, just two months into the job, to take responsibility for a report aired by the flagship Newsnight programme which wrongly accused a former politician of also being involved in child abuse.

Chris Patten, chairman of the BBC Trust, said on Sunday that he would work quickly to find a replacement for Entwistle while leading a radical overhaul of the corporation. (Reporting by Kate Holton; editing by Guy Faulconbridge)

Entertainment Wrap

REUTERS SHOWCASE

Ten Years On

Ten Years On

British tsunami brothers use funky footwear to help children.  Full Article 

Fund Raising

Fund Raising

Xiaomi raising over $1 bln from investors including GIC - source.  Full Article 

Porn Crackdown

Porn Crackdown

China arrests thousands in porn, gambling crackdown - Xinhua.  Full Article 

India v Australia

India v Australia

Boxing Day test of India's resolve in Melbourne.  Full Article | Related Story 

Elton Weds

Elton Weds

Gay British musician Elton John marries partner under new law.  Full Article 

Jaycee Charged

Jaycee Charged

China charges Jackie Chan's son over drug offence.  Full Article 

China on Cyberattacks

China on Cyberattacks

China condemns cyberattacks, but does not mention North Korea.  Full Article 

Reuters India Mobile

Reuters India Mobile

Get the latest news on the go. Visit Reuters India on your mobile device   Full Coverage