Anger grows in Puerto Rico over corruption


National News

January 21, 2020 - 9:30 AM

SAN JUAN, Puerto Rico — In a scene reminiscent of Puerto Rico’s turbulent summer of 2019, a few hundred protesters gathered on the streets of Old San Juan Monday, banging pots and pans, waving signs and demanding that Gov. Wanda Vazquez step down as anger grows over the botched delivery of emergency aid in the wake of this months’ earthquakes.

The frustration comes after a government warehouse full of supplies was found on Saturday near the southern town of Ponce, close to the epicenter of a series of earthquakes. Much of the aid, including bottled water and baby food, had been sitting around since the disastrous 2017 hurricane season and was expired. But there were also cots, generators, batteries and emergency radios.

Vazquez has called for an investigation and fired three of her staff members, including the head of the emergency management agency, Carlos Acevedo. But Vazquez — who became governor in August after her predecessor Ricardo Rossello was ousted amid massive protests — said that she had been unaware of the storage facility’s existence until someone publicized it on social media.

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