The Bolivian Bishops’ Committee on Social Education has rejected the “authoritarianism and abuse of power” exercised by President Evo Morales “against journalists who carry out their duties to inform.”
In a statement signed by Bishop Cristobal Bialasik of Oruro, the Committee expressed solidarity with the journalists who have been the target of verbal attacks by Morales. “Excesses in the exercise of freedom of expression should be opportunely denounced and clarified by the means established by current law,” the Committee stated.
In recent days Morales has slammed reporters for denouncing corruption in his administration. He claimed that only 10% of journalists have any decency, and he publicly humiliated one reporter.
“The public act in which the President of the Republic scolded a journalist revealed a disproportionate behavior, with expressions and gestures that were humiliating, intimidating and threatening,” the Committee stated.
“We demand public officials to respect journalists and the media, whose role constitutes a true democratic pillar that guarantees peaceful coexistence among Bolivians,” the statement concluded.