BBC chairman Richard Sharp, head of Britain’s public service broadcaster, announced his resignation today. It happened after an investigation revealed his involvement in a money loan to then Prime Minister Boris Johnson. The BBC itself made it known: following the investigation, a conflict of interest would have emerged in the appointment of Sharp, which took place in 2021 and supported by Johnson.
A former banker, Richard Sharp was appointed in 2021 shortly after brokering to help Boris Johnson, then prime minister, secure an £800,000 (€906,000) loan. The investigation, Sharp explains in a statement announcing his resignation, “concludes that I have violated the governance code for public appointments”, but this violation “does not necessarily invalidate the appointment”. Defining the violation “involuntary”, Richard Sharp claims he wants to put “the interests of the BBC” first, believing that the affair could represent a “distraction” with respect to the “good work” of the British audiovisual giant. His resignation will be effective at the end of June.
In a letter to Richard Sharp, Culture Minister Lucy Fraser said she “understands and respects” his decision, thanking him for his work as chairman of the BBC