2 More Puerto Rico Officials Fired After Supplies-Filled Warehouse Discovered

Written by on January 20, 2020

SAN JUAN, Puerto Rico (AP) — Gov. Wanda Vázquez fired the heads of Puerto Rico’s housing and household departments Sunday within the newest fallout over the invention of a warehouse stuffed with emergency provides courting from Hurricane Maria.

The removing of Housing Secretary Fernando Gil and Division of Household Secretary Glorimar Andújar got here a day after the governor fired the director of Puerto Rico’s emergency administration company. Vázquez fired him hours after a Fb video confirmed offended folks breaking into the warehouse in an space the place 1000’s have been in shelters since a current earthquake.

“There have been actions by authorities officers which have been utterly unacceptable,” the governor mentioned Sunday.

Vázquez mentioned she selected the extra firings after assembly with leaders of her administration Sunday morning and officers had been unable to supply info she requested about different assortment and distribution facilities.

“They weren’t in a position to personally inform me particularly the place these facilities had been positioned, what they contained and whether or not a list was accomplished,” she mentioned.

Vázquez didn’t elaborate on why Gil and Andújar had been singled out, saying solely that she had misplaced confidence in them.

A girls runs on the grounds of a tent city for hundreds of people displaced by earthquakes in Guanica, Puerto Rico, Tuesday,

A ladies runs on the grounds of a tent metropolis for tons of of individuals displaced by earthquakes in Guanica, Puerto Rico, Tuesday, Jan. 14, 2020. 

Anger erupted in Puerto Rico on Saturday after a web-based blogger posted a dwell video of the warehouse within the southern coastal metropolis of Ponce stuffed with water bottles, cots, child meals and different primary provides that had apparently been sitting there since Hurricane Maria battered the U.S. territory in September 2017.

The blogger, Lorenzo Delgado, mentioned he had acquired a tip concerning the warehouse however didn’t specify when. A gaggle of individuals broke into the warehouse and commenced distributing provides to these affected by the current 6.four magnitude quake that killed one individual and brought about injury throughout Puerto Rico’s southern area. Greater than 7,000 folks stay in shelters as sturdy aftershocks proceed.

Ponce Mayor María Meléndez mentioned she was outraged, noting that she and different mayors had been looking for primary provides for the reason that quake.

“I spent a number of days requesting cots and water,” she mentioned. “They despatched me to Cabo Rojo for the cots and to San Juan for the water. If I had identified that these provides had been there, I’d have demanded that they be taken out instantly. ”

When requested the way it was doable that she didn’t know concerning the existence of the warehouse, Vázquez replied, “That’s what the pinnacle of companies are for … to tell the governor.”

Vázquez mentioned she apprehensive that the warehouse discovery and the fallout would have an effect on the credibility of the territorial authorities in Washington, which has quickly retained some federal funds for Maria reduction amid considerations of corruption and mismanagement.


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