Angela Rayner questions BBC over tragic Huw Edwards episode

Angela Rayner calls for BBC transparency

Angela Rayner has raised questions over the BBC’s complaints procedures after the scandal surrounding Huw Edwards.

The veteran broadcaster was yesterday named as the presenter facing allegations over payments for sexually explicit images following days of intense speculation.

Describing the episode as “tragic”, the deputy Labour leader told Times Radio: “It’s right that the BBC look at their processes, and see if their complaints process works properly.

“Because people have to have confidence in those processes, that they can come forward if there are issues in the workplace, and that there are policies and procedures that will deal with it there.

“Every workplace in the country has policies and procedures that deal with these issues.

READ MORE: Met Police says BBC presenter Huw Edwards committed ‘no criminal offence’[LATEST]

“The problem is, whether people have confidence to come forward, and when they do come forward, are they going to be treated fairly? And are they going to get the issues dealt with swiftly?

“And I think that’s the question, are the BBC’s policies and procedures correct and are they being applied in the correct manner as well?”

Ms Rayner urged the BBC to be “transparent” with its complaints procedures.

She told Sky News: “First of all they need to be very transparent about their policies, procedures and what they’re doing and how they would conduct themselves so people have that confidence that they’re dealing with their complaints, so people understand their complaints process.

“Of course they can’t give details of individual complaints but the overarching, how do we deal with complaints, needs to be explained so that people have that confidence.

“Because every employer has those procedures but people have to have confidence that they’re working correctly and that they’re being followed.”

Asked if she has lost confidence in the BBC, she added: “I haven’t got the detail to see what’s happened. Of course the police have investigated and said there’s no criminality there.

“But the BBC have said they are carrying out their investigations and that they need to be able to do that.

“I would say being transparent about how your processes work so people understand there is a process and how that operates would help in terms of giving people confidence they are robust in the way they deal with these complaints.”

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In a statement yesterday, the wife of Mr Edwards said he was “suffering from serious mental health issues” and was now receiving treatment in hospital.

It came as the Met Police said no criminal offence had been committed by the newsreader and that no further police action would be taken “at this time”, allowing an internal BBC investigation to resume.

The Sun first reported allegations against the then unnamed BBC star last week claiming they had paid a young person tens of thousands of pounds for explicit images which are alleged to have started when they were 17 and been used to fund a crack cocaine habit.

A family member complained to the BBC in May before later approaching the newspaper.

However, the young person at the centre of the controversy has said via lawyers that nothing inappropriate happened.

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