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Nick Pollard, former head of Sky News, has delivered a scathing report on the BBC’s handling of the Newsnight affair, following the decision to axe an investigation into the sexual abuse of children at the hands of Jimmy Savile.

The 185-page report was published today, and concluded that the decision to stop the investigation was “seriously flawed”.

Newsnight’s editor, Peter Rippon, is to be replaced despite Pollard’s statement that his decision to pull the Savile investigation had been “done in good faith”.

The BBC’s deputy director of news, Stephen Mitchell was heavily criticized in the Pollard report and has announced his retirement.

BBC Radio 5 Live controller, Adrian Van Klaveren, and Liz Gibbons, the Newsnight deputy editor, are both moving to new positions, following their involvement with Newsnight’s report on the 2nd of November which falsely linked Lord McAlpine to child sex abuse allegations.

Another report was published by the editorial standards committee of the BBC Trust, which stated that there has been a “grave breach” of standards, and three unnamed employees has been disciplined.

The Pollard report states that the aspect of the Savile/Newsnight affair which was most worrying, was that the BBC demonstrated a “complete inability to deal with the events that followed”; clearly criticizing former BBC director general George Entwistle, who resigned following the affair.

Pollard said: "The efforts to get to the truth behind the Savile story proved beyond the combined efforts of the senior management, legal department, corporate communications team and anyone else for well over a month".

The Newsnight film in question would have revealed the truth about Savile, in late 2011. Pollard said there had been a "complete breakdown in communication all the way up the chain, effectively from Peter Rippon to George Entwistle".

The BBC Trust responded to the Pollard report, by stating that the top priority of the new director general, Lord Tony Hall, will be to reform the management of the BBC. 


Pollard inquiry labels BBC 'incapable' of dealing with the Jimmy Savile scandal
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