Politicians and campaigners have welcomed the resignation of Rebekah Brooks as chief executive of News International – but warned that questions over the phone hacking scandal remain.
Ed Miliband, the first senior politician to call for Brooks to go said: “This is not just about one individual but about the culture of an organisation.
"Rupert Murdoch says that News Corp has handled these allegations 'extremely well'.
“He still hasn't apologised to the innocent victims of hacking. He clearly still doesn't get it,” Miliband said in a statement released on Friday:
"When he comes to House of Commons next week, people will expect him to start taking some responsibility and apologise for the illegal actions which happened in his organisation."
Chris Bryant, a Labour MP who campaigned to expose the News of the World phone hacking scandal said Brooks’ resignation was long overdue.
“I thought it was disgraceful when the newspaper last week was closed as a way of trying to protect Rebekah Brooks, and then Mr [Rupert] Murdoch saying that she was his priority. It felt like those in the boiler room were carrying the can for those who were really at the helm of the ship,” he told Sky News.
But campaigner Alex Wilks of Avaaz told the Huffington Post that the scandal was not over and it was time to expose who else knew about phone hacking at the top of the company.
“I think it’s right that she accepts responsibility and now we need to know whether anyone more senior than her was involved or knew about the hacking and the cover-up, or about the wrong doing.
“We want to ensure that any of the Murdochs who knew about the wrong doing also face up to their responsibility and if it’s right that other senior executives knew, as some politicians have said recently, there’s a question to whether they should own newspapers or have a large stake in BSkyB if they are also responsible.”
Labour politician Tom Watson also said the Murdochs would come under further scrutiny, telling Sky News:
“I do think her departure will now move the focus onto Mr James Murdoch and what he knew about authorising payments."
Dominic Ponsford, editor of the Press Gazette, told the Huffington Post that News International must show they are in control of the crisis to restore confidence in the company.
“I think it’s a big shame that she didn’t resign a week ago when there’s a chance that that might have saved the News of the World and 280 jobs,” he said.
“They’ve closed the newspaper, they’ve withdrawn the BSkyB bid, they’ve sacked the chief executive and they’re cooperating with the select committee.
"The handling of the crisis over the last week hasn’t been brilliant. I think they need to somehow take control of the situation if they’re going to restore confidence.”
And Martin Moore, director of the Hacked Off campaign and head of the Media Standards Trust told the Huffington Post that Milly Dowler’s family have welcomed the resignation.
“We never called for anyone's resignation, what we want is a full public inquiry to get at the truth. It's not a witch hunt; from our perspective we really want to get out what happened. However, many people we have spoke to, and particularly the Dowler family, are pleased that she is taking responsibility. It struck people as strange that she did not step down immediately.”