Damning details of alleged sexual harassment and bullying at the BBC have emerged after a confidential report compiled by the National Union of Journalists (NUJ) was leaked.
The dossier, seen by the Mail on Sunday, included allegations of a female journalist being offered a promotion if she “accepted dinners” with her boss, a pay-off to a senior manager despite being accused of sending sexual messages to two female graduates and a raft of complaints connected to BBC World Service’s Afghan department based at the BBC’s London headquarters.
Women working at the Afghan department complained of being told to “act like good Pashtun girls” and a male producer, Daud Junbish, even emailed a female colleague’s father from his BBC email account to tell him she had “violated the ethics of Pashto, friendship and seniority, as well as those of the BBC” – an act that could have had serious cultural repercussions for the woman.
It is understood that BBC director of HR Lucy Adams saw the report, which was submitted as part of the Respect At Work Review led by Dinah Rose QC last year, but said in January that there was “not a particular problem” with bullying at the BBC.
The leak of the report has prompted John Whittingdale MP, chairman of the Culture, Media and Sport Select Committee, to call for a review while Rob Wilson MP said the Rose Report now looked “increasingly like a PR operation for the BBC” rather than a genuine attempt to tackle the alleged bullying culture.
The news will add further pressure to HR boss Lucy Adams who has been under heavy criticism recently for her role in the BBC executive pay scandal.
The Respect At Work Review was set up after the Jimmy Savile scandal revelations last year and its findings were published in May.