Not divorce, but defiance. Shaken by the affair of the opaque financing of a symposium organized in Gabon, the journalists of “Liberation” voted this Monday, April 1 a motion which, if it does not call for the resignation of director Laurent Joffrin, sounds like a disavowal.
First by the score collected by the text. It was voted by a large majority of 76.8% of the votes cast (72.8% of journalists participated in the vote), indicates the society of journalists and Liberation staff, on his Twitter account.
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Then by its tonality. Journalists and employees reaffirm in the text their “strong anger and indignation”. “The trust between the employees of “Liberation” and Laurent Joffrin, in his capacity as co-manager, is today deeply damaged”is also indicated.
French justice has opened a preliminary investigation in connection with a forum, organized by the French daily in 2015 in Gabon. The co-managers of “Liberation”, Clément Delpirou and Laurent Joffrin (who is also a former editorial director of “Obs”) defended the organization and impartiality of this forum. They assured that the newspaper had not benefited from any irregular transaction. If they recognize that the amount of the invoice (3.5 million euros in total) “may surprise”they assured that it was not an operation to glorify the Ali Bongo regime.
“Libé” received 3.45 million euros for a forum in Gabon in 2015, employees say they are “betrayed”
An internal investigation uncovered a commission paid to a local intermediary in the order of 500,000 euros and the personal interests of a manager at the time with Gabonese business circles, “two facts that were not known at all at ‘Liberation'”said the two officials, stressing that“no irregularity was observed in the financial flows” dont “Liberation” had benefited.
“A salaried director”
In their motion, the employees of “Freed” “note with satisfaction the departure of Altice” (ex-SFR group, to which the daily belongs) by Pierre Fraidenraich “who dragged the newspaper into this disastrous episode”. The former director of “Liberation” indeed resigned on Thursday from the post of general manager of BFM Business which he had held since 2016.
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In their motion, the employees demand “that all transparency be made behind the scenes of the operation” in order to “consider as well as possible the modalities of a future reparation. »
And to better influence decisions, they ask to be “represented by an employee administrator with the right to vote in the group bodies that decide on the management and the future of the newspaper”.
BL (with AFP)