House speaker, successor assure transparency in transition process
SAN JUAN – House Speaker Roberto Rivera Ruiz de Porras met Tuesday with his successor, Rep. Carlos “Johnny” Méndez, to begin the lower chamber’s transition progress, which they both assured will be “transparent.”
Rivera Ruiz de Porras advanced they have made information available to the oncoming House leadership, and maintained that this Friday they will hand in reports about the organism’s different divisions.
“I understand it will be a fairly quick transition because the information is already there. We hope to give them all the divisions’ reports by next Friday. They will study them and from there we will begin meetings for questions and everything that needs to be clarified,” the House speaker said as he concluded the conclave, which lasted just over an hour.
While seated in the House presidency’s office Tuesday morning, both Rivera Ruiz de Porras and Méndez had only praise for each another, affirming there are more things that unite them than separating them, and promising to collaborate during the new Legislative Assembly, which begins in 2017.
“I thank the acting president for his openness this morning, and I expected nothing less from him. I believe that is how processes should be carried out. We have excellent communication, not as of today, but ever since I’ve been in the Legislative Assembly, and that openness is a symbol of what will happen from here until the last report is handed in, that this transition will be one of total transparency,” Méndez sid during an improvised press conference.
To questions by Caribbean Business, Méndez left open the possibility of improving House regulations to facilitate investigations into representatives.
“This is a new House and, obviously, there must be a new regulations to address the House’s daily issues, and there must also be a new House Ethics Code. That is being developed,” said the incoming speaker, who will provide further details when the chamber comes back into session.
Several complaints were filed during this administration because they didn’t fulfill presentation requirements. Among them stand three complaints against former House Speaker Jaime Perelló, who is under investigation by the Justice Department for his ties to former Popular Democratic Party fundraiser Anaudi Hernández Pérez, who was convicted for orchestrating a public corruption scheme.