HMRC must protect Osita Mba and all future whistleblowers!
Osita is a solicitor at HMRC who had the courage to tell the Public Accounts Select Committee that senior managers in his department had quietly let off Goldman Sachs from paying millions of pounds in tax penalties.
He is now being investigated by HMRC for his disclosure and faces disciplinary procedures - at present, he cannot even enter HMRC offices without an escort. Parlaimentary Committee chair Margaret Hodge has called HMRC's behaviour towards Osita was "harassment and completely unacceptable".
As a long-standing friend of Osita's, I know that he made these disclosures in the public interest - he wanted politicians to know that big banks were getting away without paying their fair share of tax.
Dave Hartnett, Permanent Secretary for Tax, has already announced that he will be resigning next summer. Now Dave Hartnett must agree to drop the internal investigation of Osita.
I also call on Margaret Hodge to continue defending Osita, and ensure that his job is protected after the help he gave to the Public Accounts Select Committee.
Whistleblowers must be protected or there won't be any!