Andrew Gilligan, the journalist at the centre of the storm which has embroiled the BBC in the crisis which developed over the summer following the suicide of David Kelly and culminated with the report issued by Lord Hutton two days ago, this evening resigned from the BBC. He has not gone quietly, however, as he has not entirely accepted Lord Hutton's judgement:
|"I again apologise for it. My departure is at my own initiative. But the BBC collectively has been the victim of a grave injustice."
"I love the BBC and I am resigning because I want to protect it. I accept my part in the crisis which has befallen the organisation. But a greater part has been played by the unbalanced judgments of Lord Hutton."
Whether this will be the last resignation from the BBC over this crisis is not yet clear, but there are rumours that at least one more may be on the way out.
Whatever one may think of this whole affair it seemed to me quite impossible that Gilligan could remain with the BBC in the light of the consequences of his sloppy journalism. Threats yesterday by his union, the National Union of Journalists, to fight for him to remain in post were quite unrealistic and it is gratifying that this has quickly been realised.
However, the fallout from this whole affair for the BBC is by no means over I suspect. I hope to write about further developments and my own 'take' on these and possible future developments in the next few days.