Last updateFri, 23 Jul 2021 9am

Covid press briefings end, as infection rates rise in six states

Hugo Lopez-Gatell, Mexico’s chief coronavirus spokesperson, has terminated the nightly media updates that he has carried out religiously for the past 15 months.

pg3Although the deputy health minister and qualified epidemiologist often crossed swords with reporters at the carefully managed press briefings, President Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador praised his efforts, calling him a “exemplary public servant who faced “the incomprehension of our adversaries … and provocations of all sorts.”

Some of Lopez-Gatell’s collaborators pooled together to hire a mariachi band to play off the coronavirus czar at his final press briefing, a gesture that was ridiculed by many critics, and even some members of the ruling Morena Party. Legislator Sergio Mayer commented that there were 250,000 reasons (the number of Covid-19 fatalities officially reported in Mexico) why the assistant minister should be summoned to Congress and rigorously quizzed over the decisions taken by the government during the pandemic.

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