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  • Writer's pictureThe San Juan Daily Star

PDP files new round of complaints against executive branch alleging use of public funds



Popular Democratic Party Secretary General Gerardo Cruz Maldonado

By The Star Staff


Popular Democratic Party (PDP) Electoral Commissioner Karla Angleró González on Sunday announced the filing of several complaints with the Office of the Electoral Comptroller for what she said is a clear violation involving several announcements recently published by the administration of Gov. Pedro Pierluisi Urrutia that do not comply with the current electoral ban.


“It is of the utmost importance to preserve a fair and equal electoral process,” Angleró said. “Today, I announce the filing of several complaints with the Office of the Electoral Comptroller due to a clear violation of the period of the electoral ban by the government through several announcements recently published. It’s clear that the governor is trying to take advantage of public funds to campaign on [his administration’s] behalf. That’s prohibited by the Constitution and also by the Campaign Financing Law administered by the Office of the Electoral Comptroller.”


During a press conference held at the headquarters of the PDP, the party’s electoral commissioner noted that the announcements regarding the Planning Board over which the complaints were filed were published last January in newspapers throughout the island.


Angleró charged that, although the published announcements have the endorsement of the office of the Electoral Comptroller, the information published therein did not go through the evaluation of the Ad Evaluation Board and instead were approved directly from the Comptroller’s office.


“This situation cannot be left in default,” she said. “It is expedient that we investigate why this full-featured ad doesn’t comply with the law; it did not go through the analysis of the Ad Evaluation Board. Political favoritism is unacceptable and through these lawsuits we demand an investigation into the process conducted for each of these and, in particular, the circumstances surrounding their passage.”


“You don’t have to be an expert to highlight how ads were approved where the blue color stands out and the message is in line with a campaign slogan,” Angleró added. “We make a call to the appropriate oversight agencies to address these complaints …”


In the same vein, PDP Secretary Gerardo “Toñito” Cruz Maldonado announced that an appeal to be filed in court is being prepared.


In October 2023, the PDP filed two complaints claiming that the governor and the Department of Transportation and Public Works, along with other agencies, were spending millions of dollars to enhance Pierluisi’s political image ahead of the 2024 election cycle in violation of Section 9 of Article 6 of the island Constitution.


The phrase “Making Things Happen” was used by the current administration to promote government works using public funds, the PDP contended in those earlier complaints.

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