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On air: Has BP done the right thing?

Mark Sandell Mark Sandell | 16:00 UK time, Tuesday, 27 July 2010

hayward.jpg"There's no one who wants this over more than I do. I would love my life back." 

Well it IS over for beleagured BP Chief Executive Tony Hayward and he will have his life back because he'll be leaving his post in October. He'll be replaced by Bob Dudley, another BP executive who is also American.

haywardracing.jpgThe 53 year old BP "lifer" hasn't had the best of times of late - apart from the leak at the Deepwater Horizon rig causing a monumental environmental disaster- there were the gaffes - the yachting race when the oil was still pouring into the sea for example (see pic) and this quote from an interview with the Guardian..

The Gulf of Mexico is a very big ocean. The amount of volume of oil and dispersant we are putting into it is tiny in relation to the total water volume.

He's now about to fall on his sword - or be pushed out - depending on your view.

So is that an end to the matter ? Have BP and Tony Hayward done the right and decent thing ? Or should he have stayed to clean up the mess he presided over ?

hudsonette in New York thinks so, tweeting: Why are they letting Tony Hayward leave? They should put him to work cleaning up the mess he made-scrubbing birds, picking up tarballs.

According to James Herron at Dow Jones, analysts think sacrificing Hayward and choosing Dudley means BP's top priority is restoring the company's reputation in the US.

But activists from campaign group Greenpeace have shut down BP petrol stations in London because they want the company to be more environmentally responsible. Executive director John Sauven says:

We've shut down all of BP's stations in London to give the new boss a chance to come up with a better plan. They're desperate for us to believe they're going 'beyond petroleum'. Well now's the time to prove it.

And writing in Dallas Jacquielynn Floyd thinks:

we have more important work to do than smirk over Hayward's pending dismissal. We need to make sure that our regulatory apparatus is awake and functioning and that the oil industry can prove it's prepared to deal with disaster before the fact, not three months after.

Does BP need to make more radical changes or is replacing its chief executive enough?

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