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Bolivia Denounces Dismantling of Public Media During Coup Gov’t

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The sum of damages to Bolivian public media amounted to over 1 million dollars

The sum of damages to Bolivian public media amounted to over 1 million dollars.

Bolivian Deputy Minister of Communication, Gabriela Alcón, denounced this Wednesday that during the de facto government of Jeanine Áñez, state media suffered substantial losses valued at 8,965,988 Bolivian pesos (1,280,855 dollars).

The official indicated in a press conference that between November 2019 and October 2020, the losses are explained in the forced suspension of broadcasts of the state channel, damage to repeaters and radio equipment, discretionary handling of personnel and forced dismantling of equipment.

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In addition, the vice minister clarified that state-owned media hired personnel that did not comply with the requirements outlined in the Political Constitution of the State, among other regulations provided.

In this sense, the investigation presented by the communications authority of the executive assured that the facilities of Bolivia TV Cochabamba were used as a depository of shields of the Cochala Youth Resistance, among other groups.

Public channels such as Bolivia TV lost 5.7 million bolivianos (US$ 826,326) and according to Alcón, in 2020, an expenditure of 10 million bolivianos (US$ 1,449,713) was made for the hiring of 242 people, mostly “discretional and irregular,” without adjusting to the needs of the media.

(Hilo) En base a una investigación documental que realizó @vicemincom , se evidenció que, entre noviembre 2019 y octubre 2020, el manejo de los medios estatales incurrió en procedimientos fuera de norma que causaron un daño económico al Estado de Bs 8.965.000 pic.twitter.com/0RRlAefNkQ

— Gabriela Alcon (@GabrielaAlconM) November 3, 2021 ” Based on documentary research conducted by @vicemincom, it was proven that, between November 2019 and October 2020, the management of the state media incurred in procedures outside the norm that caused economic damage to the State of Bs 8,965,000.”

Other media outlets affected were the radio stations of the Pueblos Originarios, with 2.2 million Bolivianos (US$ 318,938) in losses, together with Patria Nueva with 962,500 Bolivianos (US$ 139,535), according to local media.

Finally, Alcón said that the former officials implicated in these malpractices had been notified to present the documents evidencing the contracts made under Añez’s administration.

However, she stated that they have not yet done so, for which reason a public invitation was sent for them to present the supporting documentation.