• Costa Rica Real Estate Auction
  • Costa Rica Real Estate

Venezuelan cartoonist fired after sketch slamming health care

September 18, 2014
(Screengrab from El Universal)
Veteran Venezuelan satirist Rayma Suprani was fired over this cartoon. (Screengrab from El Universal)

CARACAS – A top Venezuelan newspaper cartoonist said Wednesday he was fired over a sketch depicting Hugo Chávez’s signature melting into a flat-line electrocardiography in a jab at the decrepit national health care system.

The drawing in the paper El Universal by veteran satirist Rayma Suprani shows a normal heartbeat line in red under the word “health.”

Below it is one labeled “health in Venezuela” with the late, beloved leader Chávez’s signature quickly dying into the flat heartbeat line of a deceased person.

El Universal was traditionally anti-government, but it was sold six weeks ago and has changed its editorial tack to go easier on the administration of Chávez successor President Nicolás Maduro.

Chávez died of cancer in 2013.

Venezuela is oil-rich but its economy is a mess, with rampant inflation and unemployment and shortages of essentials, and a health care system with hospitals lacking basic supplies.

The health care woes have prompted calls for the system to be declared a national emergency.

Suprani, who has worked for the El Universal for 19 years, said he was notified of his sacking hours after the cartoon ran. The newspaper said it would issue a statement Thursday.

“To my readers and followers, I tell you that we will carry on through other, smaller avenues but with endless creativity,” Suprani said.

Even though the artist was fired, his cartoon was still viewable on the daily’s web site (www.eluniversal.com) late Wednesday.

After word spread of Suprani’s dismissal, social media lit up with expressions of support for him.

https://twitter.com/MaribelMarchan/status/512393606171471872

Weeks ago Rayma complained of censorship under the paper’s new leadership.

El Universal has been associated with the Venezuelan right for more than a century.

It was sold a month and a half ago to the Spanish company Epalisticia. Since then it has been less critical of the Maduro government.

After the sale, several columnists stopped publishing in it, and said their work was being rejected by the paper with no explanation.

Several journalists in the newsroom resigned after the change in management.

You may be interested

FIFA president says Costa Rica could host World Cup, vows ‘never again’ to corruption scandals in soccer
Costa Rica
17 views
Costa Rica
17 views

FIFA president says Costa Rica could host World Cup, vows ‘never again’ to corruption scandals in soccer

AFP and The Tico Times - November 19, 2019

FIFA President Gianni Infantino on Tuesday called on world football to "never again" return to the corruption scandals that shook…

Pura Vida in Costa Rica: Part 2 of 3
Travel & Tourism
71 views
Travel & Tourism
71 views

Pura Vida in Costa Rica: Part 2 of 3

Ed Boitano / Travel Boy - November 19, 2019

Travel writer Ed Boitano recently spent some time in Costa Rica. He chronicled his experiences at the publication Travel Boy. …

Costa Rica turns to telemedicine for patients in rural areas
Costa Rica
30 views
Costa Rica
30 views

Costa Rica turns to telemedicine for patients in rural areas

Alejandro Zúñiga - November 19, 2019

Trauma patients in Costa Rica can now receive care from the country's specialized doctors in San José — even if…

Do NOT follow this link or you will be banned from the site!