According to media reports, Algeria’s government has fired Mr Chabane Lounakel, Director General of the Public Television Establishment (EPTV), a day after the network broadcasted the qualification of Morocco’s national team to the World Cup semi-finals.
In a statement released by Algeria’s Ministry of Communication, Nadir Boukabes will replace Lounakel as the general director of the EPTV, also known as Television Algerienne – a company that manages a branch of public television in Algeria.
The statement, however, did not specify the reasons behind the sacking of the general director of EPTV, who was appointed in May 2021.
Algerian media watchers have observed that the announcement to remove Mr Chabane Lounakel coincides with the broadcast by Algerian television of the qualification of the Atlas Lions to the semi-finals of the World Cup.
It is noted that this incident is not the first of its kind in Algeria. In November, Algeria’s television channel TV2 Algerie sparked controversy with how it announced Morocco’s 2-0 victory against Belgium in the World Cup.
Morocco has become the first Arab and African country to qualify for the semi-finals phase in World Cup history.