Accountancy Age, Accountancy Age, Tuesday 3 August 2010 at 09:00:00

BBC already fully accountable, says trustee chairman

The chairman of the BBC trustees had denied any need for the BBC to beaudited by the National Audit Office saying the broadcaster was already fullyaccountable.

In a letter to The Times Sir Michael Lyons said it would be a "mistake to confuse accountability with day-to-day control by either governmentor Parliament".

There has been a long campaign to submit the BBC to NAO scrutiny and the newcoalition government has indicated a willingness to push ahead with theproposal.

Sir Michael's core argument is that allowing the NAO (a body of Parliamentreporting to MPs on the public accounts committee) to audit the BBC would be toundermine the unique constitutional position of the broadcaster to function withpublic funding but unfettered by the government or Parliament.

Recently the new chairman of the public accounts committee, Margaret Hodge,questioned the necessity of allowing the NAO to examine the BBC's accounts.

Read more:

MargaretHodge and the BBC

Torymanifesto pledges full audit of BBC

Committeeslams BBC transparency