MPs have slammed BBC executives for awarding themselves salary and bonus increases of up to 13 per cent - more than four times the rate of inflation.
The payments were revealed in the BBC’s annual report, which detailed how the 18 members of the executive committee received £5.3m, up from £4.7m in the previous year.
MPs from the culture, media and sport committee accused the BBC of producing a ‘complacent’ annual review. They singled out Alan Yentob, who awarded himself a £67,000 bonus even though the arts programme he presents had very low ratings.
The committee also drew attention to the fact that millions of viewers pay the annual TV licence fee of £116 even if they never watch the BBC.
Gerald Kaufman, chairman of the committee, said: "Licensing is a poll tax and is no longer appropriate. Now that the BBC has an audience under 30 per cent, I don't see why people who never watch it should help pay for very large salaries and bonuses."
The executive committee's opposite numbers at ITV only received a 2.5 per cent increase.