THE journalist who broke the Fr Brendan Smyth child abuse scandal says the BBC have questions to answer over serial paedophile presenter Jimmy Savile.
Chris Moore, who has won Royal Television Society Awards for his exposes on the horrendous Smyth case which brought down Albert Reynolds Irish Government, said he could see little case for a BBC defence.
He praised BBC Newsnight reporter Liz McKean, who tried to break the story only for her editor Peter Rippon to pull the plug, as being “courageous” for putting her head above the parapet to speak out about how her programme had been killed off.
Speaking on the U105 Frank Mitchell show this morning, the former BBC Northern Ireland and UTV reporter said: “Here we have a situtation where the BBC was investigating itself as to why a programme had been pulled from the schedule.
“I think the programme had to be done. Had the BBC not allowed Panorama programme to go ahead then it would have been facing a much more difficult situation and the trust the public have in the BBC.
“I would be very surprised if there was a strong and stout case for the defence. They will try to defend themselves.
“But there were a substantial number of former BBC producers and editors from Panorama yesterday who tried to put up a reasonable defence for the BBC.
“However, the big problem for the BBC is that the facts speak for themselves.
“Here we have a situtation where not only do the BBC have questions to answer but you have to look at others who have questions to answer.”
He pointed to the situation where Savile was given a position of trust at Broadmoor where vulnerable men and women were house.
“Look at the way he was allowed to have an apartment at Broadmoor and have access to young people who were mentally ill and didn’t have the ability to tell between right and wrong and couldn’t describe to anyone what happened to them the previous day before.
“He was making use of every contact he had in the hospitals where he worked and we have heard stories of how he abused children there.”
Asked by presenter Frank Mitchell about the position of Newsnight editor Peter Ripon, the investigative reporter said: “I think he is in a difficult position. He has stood aside to let an inquiry take place by the former head of Sky News.
“I think he has to sit to the side for now. What was not clear from last night’s Panorama programme was their any pressure put on him from above (in the BBC). That was not exactly clear.
“But I think the Director General George Entwhistle will have a difficult day today when he goes before Parliament.”