Puerto Rico Transportation Authority Refuses to Release Information on Damaged Bridges, and CPI Sues Them
COMUNICADO DE PRENSA
After exhausting all efforts to obtain a list of vulnerable, destroyed and reopened bridges after Hurricane María from the Highways and Transportation Authority (ACT, in Spanish), the Center for Investigative Journalism (CPI, in Spanish) filed a request for mandamus from the court to force the agency to fulfill its duty of providing access to this public information. “No one in the ACT and the Department of Transportation and Public Works (DTOP, in Spanish) has delivered the information requested” since Sept. 4, 2019 by journalist Rafael R. Díaz-Torres, according to the complaint filed in the San Juan Superior Court against Rosana Aguilar-Zapata, Executive Director of the ACT. “The only excuse the agency offered for denying access to this information is that they were afraid to share the list, since they feared that the press wouldn’t know how to use the document or could misunderstand it. After everything failed: making dozens of calls, [leaving] telephone and text messages and conducting interviews in person to obtain the requested information, the CPI filed this lawsuit given the official’s breach of her executive duty to facilitate access to public information,” said Carla Minet, executive director of the Center.