Mexican radio journalist Carmen Aristegui was fired this week after she reportedly breached an ethics code, Fox News Latino reported.
Aristegui’s ethics violation was “commenting on ‘a rumor'” about Mexican president Felipe Calderón’s possible alcohol problem. Her firing was confirmed by parent company MVS Comunicaciones in a statement published on its website. (See the Spanish version of the statement here.) The company stated:
“In our code of ethics, we commit ourselves to rejecting the presentation and spread of rumors as news.” Aristegui “presented a presumption as valid, transgressing upon our code of ethics and upon refusing to offer, as the company had asked, a public apology, we decided to terminate our contractual relationship.”
According to La Jornada, Aristegui commented on a banner that was “held up in Congress by opposition lawmakers” suggesting that Calderon is an alcoholic. The sign stated, “Would you let a drunk drive your car? No, right? So why would you let one drive your country?” Hollywood Reporter reported.
Aristegui commented on the sign, saying on her Feb. 4 radio program:
“Does Felipe Calderon have problems with alcoholism or not? This deserves, I insist, a serious, formal and official response from the presidency of the republic.”
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“The president of the republic should really give a clear, crisp, formal response to this. There is nothing offensive, I think, when someone, if this were the case, goes through a problem of this nature. ”
According to Fox News Latino, Aristegui “is regarded as one of the most credible voices in a Mexican media landscape dominated by conglomerates with close ties to politicians and powerful business interests.”
Despite losing her contract with MVS, she will continue as “anchor of Aristegui, CNN en Español’s new talk show featuring in-depth conversations with Mexican leaders from an array of fields including politics, government, business, literature and entertainment.”
iMediaEthics has written to MVS for further comment and will update with any response. StinkyJournalism was unable to find an e-mail address for Aristegui.