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  • Former Secretary of Justice Dennise Longo Quiñones, San Juan, Puerto Rico, 2020.

    Former Secretary of Justice Dennise Longo Quiñones, San Juan, Puerto Rico, 2020. | Photo: Twitter/ @VoceroPR

Published 4 July 2020
Opinion

The former official's mother reported irregularities in a US$38 million purchase of COVID-19 testing kits.

Puerto Rico’s Justice Department Secretary Dennise Longo Friday resigned after holding a heated discussion with Governor Wanda Vazquez.

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According to local outlet El Nuevo Dia, their discussion would have occurred amid disagreements over the investigations Longo wanted to carry out.

The Puerto Rican governor accepted immediately Longo’s resignation and named Wandymar Burgos as Acting Secretary of Justice.

Longo’s mother, Concepcion Quiñones, who was the Health Department acting secretary until March, denounced the irregular contracting of COVID-19 testing kits, which never arrived at the Island.

“Gov. Wanda Vazquez had initially defended the attempted purchase, only to do an abrupt turn around a week later… It’s still unclear who approved the US$38 million purchase of testing kits. Vazquez has repeatedly said she was never aware of the intended purchase,” AP reported this week.

In this possible corruption case, she highlighted the participation of at least three people from the Puerto Rican governor's trusted team.

Quiñones also said that when she was in the Health Department, she felt like a “rubber stamp” since she was only required to sign contracts or purchase orders, but she was not invited to meetings with the governor or press conferences to expose the pandemic's situation.

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