Should Alan Sugar have been hired?

June 8, 2009

Among the surprises last week, as one cabinet minster after another stepped down, was Gordon Brown’s appointment of Sir Alan Sugar as the government’s Enterprise Tsar.

Was this a sound decision, several analysts wondered, or was it a possible case of Brown seeming to confuse the worlds of politics and show business, hoping perhaps that what works in the studio would work just as well in the real world?

The star of the BBC show “The Apprentice” was to be offered a peerage and would take a role as an adviser on matters affecting small and medium-sized businesses.

But the Conservatives are objecting. They say Sugar should not be working for the government and front a TV show at the same time, particularly when the next series of the Apprentice goes out early in 2010 just a few months before a general election. The appointment, they contend, breaches BBC rules on political independence and impartiality.

Sugar himself insists there is no conflict of interest. ‘It’s very simple – all I am is an adviser, I’m not a policymaker,’ he says. ”I have been loyal to Gordon Brown and the Labour Party for quite a while, but I also have my loyalties to the BBC.”

Do you believe Sugar should have been appointed? Or is Gordon Brown perfectly entitled to have who he likes in his government of all the talents, especially someone with such proven business acumen?

 

 

“All I can do is advise those that are in charge of making policy from a business point of view … what’s right and what’s wrong,” he told Sky News.

2 comments

We welcome comments that advance the story through relevant opinion, anecdotes, links and data. If you see a comment that you believe is irrelevant or inappropriate, you can flag it to our editors by using the report abuse links. Views expressed in the comments do not represent those of Reuters. For more information on our comment policy, see http://blogs.reuters.com/fulldisclosure/2010/09/27/toward-a-more-thoughtful-conversation-on-stories/

Didn’t Adair Turner used to do this job? A case of “from the sublime to the gor’ blimey”….

Posted by Ian Kemmish | Report as abusive

I do not think that it was a bad decision to involve one of the most astute and respected businessmen in the world.

He has superior vision and knows how to fight a battle if required!

It is nice to see that Gordon will have the support of a friend at this difficult time. Perhaps he can involve some of the Apprentice interviewers in finding the real people behind the masks in government.

Let us make sure that moving forward we have everyone working for the people of this country not for their own self gain. Let us ask the question do they add value? If they do not then out they go and they get replaced just like in the real world of business!!

A breath of fresh air indeed and thank you Sir Alan for taking some of your extremely precious time out to assist in giving a clear perspective of what is actually going on behind the closed doors of parliament.

A pity Margaret will not be available on the sidelines, she could certainly sift through a few cvs for you and ask the salient question.

The very best of luck!!

Posted by Joan | Report as abusive