Peter Oborne, the able and respected former chief political commentator of the Daily Telegraph has resigned, calling for an independent review of the newspaper’s guidelines over its coverage of the HSBC tax scandal.
He claimed that prominence was not given to the HSBC story because of commercial interests.
In an Open Democracy article which gave his reasons for resigning, he wrote about the role of the press:
“A free press is essential to a healthy democracy.
“There is a purpose to journalism, and it is not just to entertain.
“It is not to pander to political power, big corporations and rich men.
“Newspapers have what amounts in the end to a constitutional duty to tell their readers the truth.
“It is not only the Telegraph that is at fault here. The past few years have seen the rise of shadowy executives who determine what truths can and what truths can’t be conveyed across the mainstream media . . .”