Bartlett Sparks Minor Controversy With Coarse JokesBy María José Goytia | Fri, 09/02/2022 - 09:20
During a CFE event in Chiapas, Manuel Bartlett, General Director, CFE, shared some vulgar humor with the state company's personnel. The comments, steeped in dark humor, sparked controversy on social media.
Bartlett voiced the comments during CFE’s announcement of the first stage of its plan to install antennas for internet access in Chiapas. Among the quips, the adjectives "mugrosos, colados y de corbata," meaning filthy, sneaky and white-collared, stood out.
''I want to confess that the power production workers are crashing the party. These colleagues do not climb the towers... we have other workers from basic supply, they stand out because they are the ones who wear white-collar outfits as opposed to the filthy [overalls]. We let them in anyway because they collect the bills,” Bartlett bantered. The jokes amused the attendees, including President López Obrador.
Before concluding his speech, Bartlett assured that CFE had been “condemned to die” by the 2014 Energy Reform of former President Enrique Peña Nieto, but that President López Obrador’s policies have rescued the state-owned company.
Bartlett’s speech generated a backlash on social media, as the comments were noted as offensive and discriminatory.
Following Bartlett, President López Obrador addressed the more than 600 electricians present at the event. During his speech, the president urged CFE workers to "be patriotic" and help the federal government to bring the internet to all corners of the country, as Mexico’s coverage remains at 70 percent.
The president also highlighted that his government will invest in the installation of 5,000 antennas to achieve its goal to provide broader internet coverage. This amount doubles the initial number of antennas the government had committed to, aiming for 80 percent coverage.
CFE’s subsidiary Telecommunications and Internet for All (TIT) unveiled its plan to bring Internet and mobile telephone services to anywhere in Mexico via the installation of 2,800 antennas, which intend to serve 6.4 million inhabitants in 18,634 communities. Special focus will be placed on the southeastern region of the country, in the states of Chiapas, Oaxaca and Tabasco where most marginalized communities are located.