BBC Creative Director Steps Down in Wake of Charity Controversy

Alan Yentob, BBC - H 2015

Alan Yentob will continue as chair of BBC Films.

Alan Yentob, a BBC veteran of almost six decades, will step down from his position as the broadcaster's creative director at the end of the year.

The decision comes following controversy over the executive's involvement as chair of the charity Kids Company. There had been speculation that Yentob had pressured journalists working on the BBC's Newsnight program over a report it was preparing into a scandal at the organization.

"The BBC is going through particularly challenging times and I have come to believe that the speculation about Kids Company and the media coverage revolving around my role is proving a serious distraction," Yentob said in statement, adding that he would continue to focus on program making and TV production at the broadcaster, and would stay on as chairman of BBC Films.

BBC chairman Tony Hall said that BBC News had considered whether or not Yentob influenced journalism and had concluded that he did not.

"Despite that, I understand his reasons for stepping down as creative director. He has been thinking about this carefully for some time, and we have discussed it privately on a number of occasions," he added.