Here’s what you might have missed last week:
The federal prosecutor left unpunished professors of the University of Puerto Rico (UPR) who participated in a research subsidized by intergovernmental organizations (OIG, in Spanish) in 2011, and who presented false reports about the time and effort of the funds used from the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA), the Department of Energy (DOE), and the National Science Foundation (NSF). The Federal Prosecutor’s Office decided that the UPR would deliver $1.8 million to the government of the United States, on November 21, as part of an agreement. On the other hand, the UPR administration has not acted against professors accused of fraud.
Despite demands for resignation by citizens amid scandal, the governor of Puerto Rico, Ricardo Rosselló, said that he will remain in office after apologizing for his comments in the Telegram group chat. The governor’s expressions emerged after the publication of new screenshots of the group chat revealed conversations between the governor; the former secretary of Public Affairs, Ramón Rosario; the representative of the governor before the Board of Fiscal Supervision (JSF, in Spanish), Christian Sobrino; and other government officials in which they made sexist and homophobic remarks, and shared confidential information.
Family members, colleagues from the university, artists, and students attended the activity “teacher among teachers” to say their goodbyes to Espinosa. The professor emerita of the UPR in Río Piedras, who had a trajectory of 50 years of cultural and theatrical management on the island, died of 97 years on July 6.
With the release of the 889 pages of the Telegram group, it was revealed that the governor and several heads of agencies mocked the students of the UPR, Río Piedras Campus when it was announced that Hamiltonwould not be held at the University’s theater. From pages 489 to 526, several members of the groupchat, including governor Rosselló, make fun of the students.
The president of the musical group choir at the UPR in Cayey explained that the University dismissed the services of the professor Amarilis Pagán as director of the choir without “any kind of justification.” The University’s administration did not renew the contract of Pagán, who had obtained in August 2012 a license that allowed her to work as a professor in the Medical Sciences Campus and director of the Choir at the UPR in Cayey for four years.
The independent representative Manuel Natal asked the president of the House of Representatives, Carlos Méndez, that the legislative body begin the process of impeachment for governor Ricardo Rosselló. Natal alleged that after the publication of the content in the Telegram group chat the governor “does not comply with the constitutional prerogatives of his office.”
The chapter of the organization College Democrats of the UPR, Río Piedras Campus denounced the expressions by Governor Ricardo Rosselló and other officials in a private group chat as sexist and homophobic.
The social entrepreneur Vitrina Solidaria began the sale of a collection of backpacks inspired by El Yunque National Forest. The backpacks contribute to the entrepreneurship of micro-companies that belong to the El Yunque Emprende program. Through the project, the non-profit organization offers workshops and consultancies to different entrepreneurs that live in the nine municipalities that are part of the national forest.
Several student bodies of the UPR expressed their rejection and indignation with the expressions issued by governor Ricardo Rosselló and the functionaries and ex-functionaries that participated in the Telegram group chat. Among the groups are the Students General Councils (CGE, in Spanish) of the Mayagüez, Río Piedras, Cayey and Ponce units, and the student representatives before the Government Board.
The rector of the UPR, Río Piedras Campus, Luis A. Ferrao Delgado, said today that the Río Piedras Campus was completely prepared to receive the show Hamilton in their theater.
Edited by: Zoé N. Conde Velázquez