Monday, January 16, 2012

Showdown in Culture

So who is in charge of the Secretaria de Cultura, Arte, y Deportes (SCAD) in Honduras this Monday morning?

SCAD has been run for the last month by a commission investigating irregularities in the ministry. The commission turned in its report on Friday and its commission expired Sunday evening.

Tony Sierra says that on Friday evening, Porfirio Lobo Sosa called him and told him that as of Monday morning he was in charge of SCAD. Speaking by telephone from Comayagua, when contacted by the press, he said:
"My job is to return the Secretaria to normalcy and refocus on everything to do with the artistic, cultural, and sports development of the country."

But don't tell that to Bernard Martinez.

He showed up at his office in SCAD this morning to resume his job as Minister of Culture, saying:
"I don't have any official notification of the naming of Mr. Sierra as interim [head] in this job....I am awaiting some notice from the president that will make this clear, conclusive and official."

El Heraldo couldn't resist a dig at the presidential press office:
The defective press office of the Government House (Executive Branch) which is coordinated by Miguel Angel Bonilla, could not say if Bernard Martinez was fired or remained suspended indefinitely.

In addition, unofficially, El Heraldo has heard from a source in the Executive branch that Godofredo Fajardo, formerly Vice Minister of Sports, was informed of his dismissal by Lobo Sosa's private secretary, Reinaldo Sanchez.

El Heraldo also reported that the head of the SCAD workers union, Melba Bardales, assured them that Martinez and Fajardo were fired, and if they came to work today "it was only to pick up their things, because both already know they've been fired."

So: who is in charge of SCAD this morning?

Update 9:52 AM PDT: La Prensa now reports that Lobo Sosa has not, in fact, made up his mind what to do with Bernard Martinez. According to them (citing unofficial sources in the Executive Branch), Lobo Sosa appointed Sierra as interim head of SCAD while he decides who to appoint as the next head of SCAD. They go on to say it might be Sierra, or someone else. They did not say or even hint that it would be Martinez.

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