US$6.7M Dominican TV Channel deal opens can of worms
Santo Domingo.- Leftist leader Narciso Isa Conde on Wednesday challenged Dominican Telecom Institute (Indotel) president Gedeon Santos to break the silence on the sale of shares in the Antena Latina TV Channel, part of the properties seized from the collapsed bank Baninter.
Isa Conde also said he expects the National District Civil Court to hand down a ruling on the case next week.
The sale of the shares took place August 24, 2012, and has been in the courts since.
Investigative journalist Mario Zapete on Thursday slammed the National Business Council (Conep) for its role in the transaction, noting that while they support Justice minister Francisco Dominguez’s campaign to prosecute senator Felix Bautista, the business leaders keep mum about its members involved in the deal for the TV channel. “That’s the reason why we (SIN News Service) left Antena Latina because we couldn’t support that operation and much less remain silent.”
“It’s a paper lion, Bautista could be a corrupt rascal, but we cannot talk about corrupt business leaders, such as the business leaders form Santiago who went to support Dominguez against Bautista, but Leonel (ex president Fernandez), Danilo (president Medina), or the Conep won’t talk about that,” Zapete said. “Even the Senate calls the Antenna Latina transaction “highway robbery.”
“Just 6.7 million dollars?” the journalist asks. “Who can believe that a TV channel such as 2, 4, 5, or this one here 9, is worth just 15 million dollars, or what’s even rose, half of that, but it’s the Senate which has said that many violations have occurred in the transaction,” he said.
“Antena Latina is being run y people who don’t have one cent invested in that. Those are people with morals of cardboard, who say that it is theirs, but in addition Bautista is a nobody, he must be persecuted,” he said.
Zapete affirmed that Medina should be asked if he has the Senate report, and if it’s the same as Indotel’s. “Narciso is going to talk, and I will bring Narciso here, as long as I can, because throughout its existence Channel 9 has accepted dissident voices such as Nuria Piera and and Freddy Beras Goico.”