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Two more BBC executives step aside

London, Nov. 12: The crisis over the BBC’s reporting of a decades-old sexual abuse scandal deepened today as two more senior executives withdrew temporarily from their jobs following the resignation of the corporation’s director general in what the chairman of its supervisory trust called a “ghastly mess”.

The BBC’s website said its director of news, Helen Boaden, and her deputy, Stephen Mitchell, had “stepped aside”, the latest moves since a flagship current affairs programme, Newsnight, wrongly implicated a former Conservative Party politician, Alistair McAlpine, in accusations of sexual abuse at a children’s home in North Wales in the 1970s and 1980s.

A separate internal inquiry is investigating an earlier incident one year ago when Newsnight cancelled a programme concerning allegations of sexual abuse by Jimmy Savile.

But even as the two executives were reported to be stepping aside, the BBC management seemed to be trying to minimise the impact of the moves, saying it wanted “to make it clear that neither Boaden nor Mitchell had anything at all to do with the failed Newsnight investigation into Lord McAlpine”.

 
 
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