PIP Candidate Insists on Public Debt Default as Best Strategy
SAN JUAN – After Gov. Alejandro García Padilla signed Executive Order 2016-010, which declares an emergency period for the Government Development Bank, the gubernatorial candidate for the Independence Party (PIP), María de Lourdes Santiago, said the move is glimpse into the proposed federal financial control board, and insisted on her party’s proposal of defaulting on the commonwealth’s debt as the best political strategy to force the federal government and creditors to begin negotiating in an orderly fashion.
“The PIP has insisted, since last year, on an outright declaration of default to creditors. The governor, with his executive order, has decided, unilaterally and irresponsibly, on a veiled declaration of default to Puerto Ricans that provide services to the government, confirming how misguided and insufficient the moratorium law is,” Sen. Santiago said in a statement Sunday.
She warned that, through the order, the decisions of which services and payments are essential will not reflect “any predetermined order of priorities, evidencing once again, improvisation and lack of transparency.” Calling the order a preview of the Republican-proposed fiscal oversight board “under a framework of total disarray,” she said assured that “in the hands of a more sensible government, a coherent plan would have been produced early in the term when the impending disaster was already obvious.”
The independence movement leader said the current “inadequate and improvised measures persist” and stressed there is “no interest” in promoting economic development, without which any implemented measures will be “nothing more than a small and temporary patch.”
For the congresswoman, the “absolute power to determine through the executive order how the moratorium is run and who will be designated at the discretion of the governor, is something that should scandalize the country,” adding “it produces an unprecedented level of uncertainty and distrust among the people.”
On the proposal of defaulting on the debt as a strategy, she criticized the “apparent contradiction that no sector beyond the independence movement wants to talk about non-payment to creditors, but they don’t hesitate when it comes to unilaterally decreeing…non-payment on those providing services and goods to the Government of Puerto Rico and therefore the people.”