Four years after her appointment, Gabriela Cañas steps down as president of the Efe news agency. The government has decided to dismiss the journalist after four years of management that have aggravated the already precarious economic situation of the public company dependent on the State Society of Industrial Participations (SEPI).

The communication has arrived by email on the morning of this holiday Wednesday to the Works Council from the Human Resources department, according to Voz Pópuli and confirmed by EL MUNDO from union sources. However, the workers have not yet received any communication from the company. The official statement does not elaborate on the motivations that have led to the dismissal nor does it advance who could replace Cañas as president of the agency.

Gabriela Cañas replaced Fernando Garea in February 2020, and then the only motivation given by Pedro Sánchez's government was, in the words of the then Minister Spokesperson María Jesús Montero, that it was a normal change that usually occurs at the beginning of all legislatures. Garea had been in office for only 19 months.

Once again, the dismissal of the president of Efe, the first woman to head the public news agency, comes after the formation of a new executive. However, the journalist's management has not been without controversy. A report by the Court of Auditors revealed, in January of this year, that Efe was on the verge of bankruptcy in 2020 and 2021 due to the enormous debts it was carrying, which fell on a structural debt that it had been dragging for years.

The agency closed 2020 with a debit balance of €1,187,992 in its equity compared to the €7.7 million with which it had closed the previous year, which implied that the news agency was in one of the causes of dissolution provided for in the Capital Companies Act, the Court of Auditors pointed out in its report. The extraordinary situation created by the Covid pandemic allowed bankruptcy to be avoided. "However, the unbalanced economic and financial situation of the Entity at that date is not irrelevant," the agency said.

The extension of anti-Covid measures once again served as a lifeline for Efe in 2021, when it lost nine million euros. And this is despite the fact that the State's contribution rose to 53.9 million euros, 1.1% more than in the previous year. SEPI came to Efe's aid last spring with 15.5 million after increasing its losses in 2022 by more than 30%. In August, it became known that, despite a clearly poor economic situation, the leadership of the public agency raised his salary by more than 20% after lowering it during the pandemic years.

Gabriela Cañas has spent most of her career at El País, where she has been head of the Madrid and Society sections, correspondent in Paris and Brussels and editorialist. She has also been deputy director of the UAM-El País School of Journalism. Between 2006 and 2008 she was Director General of International Information of the Presidency of the Government under the mandate of José Luis Rodríguez Zapatero.