Wednesday 16 June 2021

San Salvador’s Controversial “Millenial Mayor” Wages War Against The Press

Nayib Bukele is one of the most controversial figures in El Salvador. (El Diario de Hoy)

(Q24N) Nayib Bukele is the mayor of San Salvador, the capital of El Salvador. He won the position in 2015 on the official party ticket, the Farabundo Martí National Liberation Front (FMLN), after being mayor of Nueva San Salvador, a small municipality on the outskirts of the capital.

Bukele, whom many say will be the next presidential candidate for FMLN, has done many things during his tenure as mayor to raise red flags, including nepotism, obstruction of press freedom and cybercrime.

- Advertisement -

He has chosen social media as his favorite medium for communication. On Facebook, he has more than 922,600 followers, 318,000 on Twitter and 197,000 followers on Instagram. He shares news about his administration, his jobs plan and often talks about the media.

Bukele, 35, was born into a very affluent family in El Salvador with very diverse business holdings, including fast food chains, a motorcycle company, nightclubs and an advertising agency.

Nayib Bukele and freedom of the press

Last week he denied reporters from El Dairio de Hoy, La Prensa Gráfica and El Mundo entry to a press conference. The Association of Journalists of El Salvador (APES) condemned the move.

- Advertisement -

Serafín Valencia, President of APES, explained that no public official has the authority to prevent the work of the media.

“These are measures that violate freedom of expression and freedom of information,” he said. “He is a public official who is obliged to give information.”

In addition, Bukele is suing La Prensa Gráfica after publishing several articles highlighting a suspicious bidding process for government contracts.

Roberto Rubio, Director of the National Foundation for Development described the situation as absurd.

“Reacting in that irrational way does not have a legal basis,” Rubio said.

Nayib Bukele will sue La Prensa Gráfica for defamation. Bukele said La Prensa Gráfica has published misinformation about million-dollar contracts awarded by the municipality.

- Advertisement -

La Prensa Gráfica, who reportedly obtained official documents related to the deal, published articles on million-dollar contracts that the mayor of San Salvador granted to foreign companies that were going to install surveillance cameras.

The mayor reportedly bought the most expensive option for the project. The municipal council has made three appeals to review the contract.

Councilman Edwin Zamora of the ARENA party said a high level commission was created that will investigate the purchase process, with help from representatives of the Attorney General’s Office (FGR).

Bunker Trolls

Nayib Bukele has also been linked to Bunker, a digital marketing company contracted by Bukele to develop a mobile application for the mayor’s office.

In November 2015, Bunker employees were arrested, accused of copying the La Prensa Gráfica website before trolling it. More details and evidence about this came to light after officials analyzed Whatsapp conversations between programmers.

A few days later, Bukele called for a rally in front of the FGR. During his speech, Bukele denied the accusations against him:

“If someone did it, it was not me,” he said.

Bukele turned to the prosecutor during the rally and said, “I’ll tell you right now, prosecutor, count on us if you’re going to fight for the people. Now, how will the prosecutor prove it? Well, you can come down if you want … If you, Mr. Prosecutor, are going to work for this town, this town is going to be with you. If you, prosecutor, go to work for La Prensa Gráfica, this town is going to run you out of the office.”

“The Millennial One Who Will Save a Violent City”

Nayib Bukele has been mentioned in various international media, including DW, BBC News, Society and Die Zelt.

In October, the English newspaper The Guardian wrote an article called “Can a millennial mayor save one of the world’s most violent cities?”

The article narrates the violence that El Salvador suffers, and describes how the author met Bukele to hear his explanations about projects to reduce violence.

The article called El Diario de Hoy and La Prensa Gráfica enemies of Bukele, since they rarely publish stories about Bukele’s projects and instead publish critical reports about scandals in his administration.

The US magazine Foreign Policy included Bukele in its 2016 FP Global Thinkers list, under the category of “decision makers” for “plotting an urban face-lift” and for “planning a new urban look.”


- Advertisement -

We strive for accuracy in its reports. But if you see something that doesn’t look right, send us an email. The Q reviews and updates its content regularly to ensure it’s accuracy.

Q24N is an aggregator of news for Latin America. Reports from Mexico to the tip of Chile and Caribbean are sourced for our readers to find all their Latin America news in one place.

Related Articles

Which countries could follow El Salvador by making it legal tender?

Q24N - El Salvador may be the first country to adopt...

El Salvador Makes Bitcoin Legal Tender, A World First

Q24N (Reuters) El Salvador has become the first country in the...


Today’s Covid News: Contagion rate in Costa Rica remains unchanged in the last week

QCOSTARICA - The contagion rate of covid-19 in Costa Rica in the last week did not change, a fact that is seen for the...

Lack of space on Racsa’s hard drive paralyzed immigration consultation at the airport this Monday

RICO's DIGEST - We've all had this happen, your computer's hard drive is full and your computer crashes. But we are not the Radiográfica...

Today’s Vehicle Restriction June 15: 3 & 4 CANNOT circulate

Today, Tuesday, June 15, vehicles with plates ending 3 & 4 CANNOT circulate The measure is countrywide and applied between 5:00 am and 9:00 pm,...

Today’s Covid News: Restrictions allowed a decrease in Covid-19 and prevented hospital collapse

QCOSTARICA - A moderate decline in new cases for the third consecutive week allowed the hospital system to avoid the dreaded collapse and rapid...

Today’s Vehicle Restriction: June 11, “EVENS”

Today, Friday, June 11, only EVENS can circulate. The measure is countrywide and applied between 5:00 am and 9:00 pm, save for those under the...

Today’s Vehicle Restriction: June 10, “ODDS”

Today, Thursday, June 10, only ODDS can circulate. The measure is countrywide and applied between 5:00 am and 9:00 pm, save for those under the...

On Monday the vehicle restriction will change, again

QCOSTARICA - In times of pandemic, things change constantly, especially when it is necessary to tighten the belt to reduce the contagion of covid-19. The...

Today’s Vehicle Restriction June 16: 5 & 6 CANNOT circulate

Today, Wednesday, June 16, vehicles with plates ending 5 & 6 CANNOT circulate The measure is countrywide and applied between 5:00 am and 9:00 pm,...

Tourism sector feels in crisis despite increase in international arrivals

QCOSTARICA - Despite the improvement in tourist arrivals reported in May, with more than 72,000 visitors, both the Cámara Nacional de Turismo (Canatur) and...


Get our daily newsletter with the latest posts directly in your mailbox. Click on the subscribe and fill out the form. It's that simple!

Log In

Forgot password?

Forgot password?

Enter your account data and we will send you a link to reset your password.

Your password reset link appears to be invalid or expired.

Log in

Privacy Policy

Add to Collection

No Collections

Here you'll find all collections you've created before.