British Prime Minister David Cameron has reportedly threatened to shut down the state-funded British Broadcasting Corporation (BBC) over its biased coverage of the latest general election in the European country.
Cameron threatened to “close down” the broadcaster in a bid to exert pressure on the staff, said Nick Robinson, BBC’s political editor, on Sunday, the website of British Daily Telegraph reported.
“What really matters is the impact it has on other people. Some people on the bus regarded it as funny but they generally didn’t work for BBC. The people who did [work for the BBC] regarded it as yet another bit of pressure and a sort of sense of ‘don’t forget who’s boss here’,” the political editor went on to say.
Robinson further noted that the mounting intimidation has certainly raised concerns among the BBC staff, but stressed that Cameron would not venture to carry out his threat.
“The Tory’s attitude and Cameron’s in particular is rather like their attitude to the Church of England. They are delighted it exists and regard it as vital to the fabric of England, but they also find it really annoying,” Robinson said. “I’ve never met a senior Tory who wants to close down the BBC … I could be proved wrong … [but] I don’t think the BBC will get closed down.”
Following the British general election in May, senior members of the ruling Conservative Party accused the corporation of showing “left-wing bias” in the coverage of the significant event.
After the Tories secured a sweeping victory in the voting, Cameron appointed John Whittingdale as the British secretary of state for culture, media, and sport. Reports said that Whittingdale was assigned by the premier to reconsider the BBC’s Royal Charter in a bid to “sort out” the corporation.
Whittingdale, however, rejected the reports, saying he holds no “vendetta” against the broadcaster.
Downing Street also dismissed Robinson’s allegations as “nonsense.”
In the May election, the Conservative Party ended up with 331 seats in the House of Commons, 24 more than in 2010. This meant that Tories had more than the required 326 margin and thus could form a government of their won without going into coalition with another party.