04 April 2014

Dominican Republic


The news media are continuing to wait for the ruling of the Constitutional Court on a lawsuit seeking annulment of several articles of the Penal Code and Law 6132 on Expression and Dissemination of Thought, while regulates the practice of the press, in order to know whether there are to be eliminated those elements that penalize journalism which are still contained in the national legislation.

Las November security agents of the Finance Ministry physically attacked cameramen Expedy Rodríguez and Ceesar Valenzuela of Valverde province, preventing them from covering the closure of casinos. Late last year it was learned of lawsuits filed by government party legislators against commentators and executives of the radio programs “El Gobierno de la Mañana” (The Morning Govrnment) of radio station Z-101, Juan Taveras Hernández, Willy Rodríguez and Bienvenido Rodríguez and of the digital portal Ciudadoriental.org editor Robert Vargas and reporter Julio Benzan. Senator Félix Bautista and Congressman Alfredo Martínez alleged defamation. Television commentators Juan Bolívar Díaz and Luis Eduardo Lora were victims of a media campaign that accused them of being “traitors to the fatherland” for the position they have taken against a controversial sentence of the Constitutional Court concerning the requirements that undocumented foreigners have to comply with to receive their official residence permits or legal certificate of Dominican nationality. The accusations were made public by the self-styled National Network for the Defense of Sovereignty and the Sovereign Foundation in formal submissions to the Public Prosecutor’s Office, but to date no judicial action has occurred.