The planned broadcast of a Panorama investigation into Comic Relief has reportedly been cancelled after a string of BBC executives ruled themselves out of making decisions about it.
The documentary is understood to examine how the charity allegedly invested £150 million of its funds for up to eight years, before handing the money to the causes for which it had been raised.
Some of the money was allegedly invested in tobacco firms and an arms company.
By the end of last year, the charity was allegedly sitting on £261million in a mixture of shares, bonds and cash.
The six-month investigation also explores how staffing costs at Comic Relief have allegedly almost doubled from £7.1million a year in 2008 to £13.5 million by 2012.
The programme was scheduled to air later this month but is reported to have been postponed.
A BBC source told the Daily Mirror: “It has already been put back once and the worry is this investigation will never see the light of day.
“This is causing huge problems within the Corporation, opening a can of worms some would rather stayed closed.
"We’re struggling to find other execs to take the place of those who ruled themselves out due to a conflict of interest. This is the BBC in full-on post-Savile self-flagellation mode.”
Comic Relief raises millions of pounds through its two major fundraising campaigns, Red Nose Day and Sport Relief, to fight poverty in the UK and overseas.
Both campaigns receive extensive coverage on BBC television.
A record £75 million was raised for Comic Relief in March, to be spent on charity projects in Africa and Britain.
Comic Relief said operating costs “have gone up in order to generate more funds” and costs were covered by corporate sponsors and Gift Aid claims from HM Revenue and Customs.
In a statement released later, it added: “We can assure the public that Comic Relief takes the issue of managing money very seriously indeed and we publish full details of the approach taken on our website.
"These claims are inaccurate, misleading and show a total lack of understanding of the actual position.
"The charity has done nothing wrong. Comic Relief keeps its costs under close control and abides by all Charity Commission regulations.
"Importantly, Comic Relief is committed to making sure that every pound the charity gets directly from the public is a pound that goes towards helping transform the lives of poor and vulnerable people.”
The charity said it did not invest directly in any company but in blue chip managed funds, “to fulfil legal and Charity Commission requirements on how charities manage their money, and in line with independent advice.”
It said costs had increased because it was doing “more than ever before to help poor and vulnerable people across the world.”
A BBC spokesman said: “At any one time the BBC is working on any number of investigations. We don’t comment on these.”
Matchlight, the independent production company that carried out the investigation, declined to comment.