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Radio programme cancelled, allegedly as a result of political pressure

(CEPET/IFEX) - On 18 July 2008, "Índice Político", a programme aired by Radio Capital radio station, was cancelled due to alleged pressures from the government, according to the programme's host, journalist Francisco Rodríguez. The station broadcasts on the 830 AM frequency.

"The day before the cancellation, certain people expressed their irritation about me having spent 'too much time' on a news item about Interior Minister Juan Camilio Mouriño Terrazo. The news item was about the fact that the Federal Access to Public Information Institute (Instituto Federal de Acceso a la Información Pública, IFAI) has ordered Petróleos Mexicanos (PEMEX, the national state oil company) to open its files regarding 108 contracts awarded to the interior minister's relatives," Rodríguez said.

Rodríguez, whose column, also called "Índice Político", is published in more than 40 newspapers across the country, said the cancellation of his radio programme came as a result of his criticism of the interior minister when he referred to the contracts the minister's family members have with the publicly-owned petroleum company.

According to Rodríguez, President Felipe Calderón Hinojosa's government pressured Grupo Radiodifusoras Capital, the group responsible for granting a radio concession to Radio Capital, to have the "Índice Político" programme taken off the air.

"I don't hold those granted licences to use radio frequencies responsible for the cancellation. Similar to the programme itself, the licence holders have been victims of the pressures the government exerted (. . .) when confronted with a radio programme in which statements were made and people heard things that may have bothered certain individuals. It is certainly no coincidence that the programme was gradually replaced with music by stations located in areas that have intolerant National Action Party (Partido Acción Nacional, PAN) governments, such as Baja California, Jalisco and Guanajuato, although, inexplicably, the programme has survived in Querétaro," Rodríguez wrote in his column.

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