Could Gary Barlow have said more? Like ‘Never again’?

Posted on

Gary Barlow has apologised for using what many have considered to be aggressive tax avoidance schemes. According to the Guardian Barlow has said on Twitter:

"I want to apologise to anyone who was offended by the tax stories earlier this year."

And

"With a new team of accountants, we are working to settle things with all parties involved ASAP."

I think the appropriate question is whether that apology is enough. He apparently said no more.

Firstly, let me be clear, I accept apologies. They usually cost the person offering them quite a lot, and I therefore treat them as being significant. We all make mistakes. We all have to say sorry. Barlow has, and in as far as it goes the apology is clear.

But that still leaves me wondering if more could have been said? Like 'never again'? Why didn't he say that he and his companies would not in future use tax havens and tax avoidance mechanisms? Why didn't he even say he has committed to paying all the taxes he owes in the right place, at the right time and at the right rate in the future?

There was a win waiting for him. All he had to do was grab the initiative and set a trend by signing a tax pledge - to do the right thing from now on. Why hasn't he taken it?