PDP president asks suspended Mayagüez mayor to resign
By The Star Staff
Popular Democratic Party (PDP) President Jesús Manuel Ortiz González has asked suspended Mayagüez Mayor José Guillermo “Guillito” Rodríguez Rodríguez to resign as he faces trial on charges of conspiracy and embezzlement of public funds.
After noting that “the process that the mayor will face requires his full attention,” Ortiz González said in a written statement that he had spoken with the mayor and had expressed that “in order to dedicate his efforts to address his personal and family situation, as well as to make viable the work that we have to do as a party a year before the elections, the most appropriate thing is for him to resign from his position and continue focused on the process that is coming.”
Ortiz González said he hopes Rodríguez will do what’s best for himself, his family, Mayagüez and the PDP.
“To the popular leadership of Mayagüez, I call on you to reflect on the responsibility that we all have. This is not the time for personal agendas,” Ortiz González said. “Now it is up to us to work with determination in our reorganization and prepare the community for the upcoming electoral event.”
Judge Héctor López Sánchez found cause for trial last Friday against Rodríguez and Mayagüez’s municipal finance director, Yahaira Valentín Andrade.
The allegations are related to the diversion of $9.8 million earmarked for phases 5 and 6 of the Mayagüez Trauma Center project. The funds, granted by the island Legislature, were deposited into an investment account in New York.
The trial is scheduled to begin on Dec. 22.
“I am the mayor of Mayagüez, I am at the end of my four-year term, and we will make determinations when I have to make them,” the mayor said Friday.