Wednesday, February 10, 2010

Gag Order To Go?

This morning's El Tiempo reported that the National Congress approved a resolution last night that will ask the new Minister of Government, Africo Madrid, to, at the next cabinet meeting, ask the cabinet to approve a decree that revokes PCM-124-2009 pushed through by the Micheletti administration last October, a decree that restricted the freedom of speech of broadcast media in Honduras. We translated the text of the decree here.

This decree was used as part of the justification for keeping opposition media shut down after an earlier decree permitted the military to occupy and disassemble Radio Globo and Cholusat Sur. When these stations returned to the air, their broadcasters discussed how they were self-censoring in order to avoid being shut down again. Today's Tiempo article noted that the decree was used to cancel and censor programs, fire reporters and on-air personalities, and to confiscate and physically damage broadcast equipment.

The resolution was introduced by Edwin Pavon, a UD party representative, who noted that in his opinion, it violated article 72 of the Honduran constitution, which guarantees and protects the free exchange of opinions. Tiempo noted that German Leitzelar spoke in favor of the motion, saying that it would be a valuable contribution to the reconciliation government of Porfirio Lobo.

1 comment:

Tambopaxi said...

I agree with Pavon and the idea of the resolution. Freedom of expression needs to be restored in the interests of reconciliation and normality...