BBC attacked for withholding presenter costs from NAO

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A row has erupted over the refusal of the BBC to provide the National Audit
Office with information about radio programme presenter and staff costs without
constraints on what could be reported to Parliament.

In a report, the Commons Public Accounts Committee chairman Edward Leigh said
the BBC’s attitude ‘places a big question mark over whether the BBC is achieving
value for money for the licence payer’. The report demands that the BBC must be
brought fully within the scope of the NAO. Current access is restricted to areas
agreed with the BBC.

Leigh said: ‘It is disgraceful that the NAO’s lack of statutory audit access
to the BBC puts the corporation in the position to dictate what the spending
watchdog can or cannot see.’

Information that was obtained shows, for example, that Wake up to Wogan on
Radio 2 costs twice as much as the closest commercial competitor.

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