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Journalist fired after criticising mayor

(IPYS/IFEX) - Journalist Yanina Póveda Mercedes, director and host of the program "Contacto Informativo" on Radio Julices, reported that she was fired on 24 October 2011 after the mayor of Cajabamba pressured the station owner. The incident took place in the province of Cajabamba, in the Cajamarca region, northern Peru.

Póveda told IPYS that Carlos Ibáñez Caballero, owner of Radio Julices, told her before she hosted her last program: "You won't be able to continue here because I'm being pressured by the mayor [of Cajabamba, Wilson Pesantes Alayo] and I can't be at odds with him."

The journalist had been critical of Pesantes Alayo's administration for several days, denouncing alleged irregularities in the service provided by Serenazgo [municipal police] and in the sale of materials for a construction project.

Póveda stated that she has been harassed since her dismissal. Members of Serenazgo assaulted her when she went to cover an accident in which municipal officials were involved. The officers tried to snatch her video camera and broke it in the process.

IPYS condemns Póveda's politically motivated dismissal and the police officers' attacks against her.

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