"A Conflict of Interest
" is the twelfth episode of the BBC
comedy series Yes, Prime Minister
and was first broadcast 31 December 1987.
is vexed at his lack of popularity within the press, and particularly at rumours of a scandal in the City. Sir Humphrey Appleby
advises him not to act unless the rumours become fact, and Bernard
counsels that the Prime Minister
spends too much time worrying about what the newspapers say. Hacker responds that with a party conference
coming up, he has little choice but to worry.
Sir Humphrey lunches with his old friend Sir Desmond Glazebrook, the Chairman of Bartlett's Bank, who admits that the reports from the City are true. A major bank named Phillips Berenson is about to become insolvent because of dishonest activities by its directors. Furthermore, Sir Desmond states that his own bank has lent to Phillips Berenson (as they seemed "decent chaps") and stands to lose a great amount. He suggests that the Bank of England
intervenes to bail them out at the taxpayers' expense, and, seeing as a new Governor is about to be appointed, he asks Sir Humphrey if pressure can be brought to bear on the PM to select the right man for the job — i.e. someone in whose interests it will be to assist in the cover-up.
The problem is that the favourite for the post is Alexander Jameson who is known for his scrupulous honesty and integrity, which has earned him the sobriquet "Mr Clean". Sir Desmond is... Read More