Roberto Veiga and Lenier Gonzalez, Editor and Deputy Editor, respectively, of the “Espacio laical” (Lay Space), resigned their positions after ten years in charge of the publication, on their “free will” and “not as a result of any dismissal,” according an explanatory note circulated Wednesday by email and signed by both.
Following the reactions generated in the media to the change in the editorship of the magazine, and the opposite versions on their removal or resignation, Veiga and Gonzalez point out that on May 2 they requested his resignation to Cardinal Jaime Ortega, through Gustavo Andújar Robles, recently appointed director of Espacio laical.
“It was the third time in the last two years, we asked for our resignation,” says the message sent by the editors. “As of yesterday we were told that they had finally been accepted by the Archbishop of Havana. The two previous requests were never approved by the Cardinal. Then, out of consideration for his person we accepted to continue exercising our functions. “
Veiga and Gonzalez described as “very unfortunate incident” the misunderstanding caused from disclosure in the afternoon of Tuesday, of a goodbye note sent to 16 collaborators and friends, which claimed they had been “liberated” from their obligations; however, various media referred to the fact in terms of “dismissal”.
Under this circumstance, Gustavo Andújar, Director of Lay Space, denied that the editors were dismissed by a press release issued Wednesday.
“Roberto and Lenier were not ‘released from office’, in the sense in which the term is used in Cuba, but renounced to them, in the sense that term is used everywhere. Nobody forced them to resign. Nobody demanded them, asked, or even suggested them to quit. They just made effective a waiver that was announced on more than one occasion, even with a much defined time horizon, “the statement reads.
In their most recent message, Veiga and Gonzalez regret “disproportionate and aggressive tone” of Gustavo Andújar’s communication, and detail the reasons for their resignation, linked to the disapproval of the socio-political profile of the magazine in certain sectors of the ecclesiastical community, a problem that has caused tension on the figure of the Cardinal and the editors themselves.
“As such, we thought it appropriate to do so-and still think-that it was not morally right to continue running a publication that caused divisions within the ecclesial community itself, where the positions of those who think that the Church should not interfere ‘in politics ‘and those who believe that they should not open their spaces to all actors of Cuban civil society “, they say.
Finally, Veiga and Gonzalez leave a message of thanks to the contributors of the magazine and, in particular, to Cardinal Jaime Ortega, for his support “to as far as it was possible.” They also recognize the father Carlos Manuel de Céspedes, “for his loyalty and for pointing us the way and serenity of spirit to cross it,” and make wishes for the future of Espacio Laical and Cuba.