The Puerto Rican people are tired of energy privatizers

This past week, the Puerto Rican people have begun to strongly express their opposition to the privatization of energy. Both Luma Energy, which is responsible for transmission and distribution, and Genera PR, which, as its name indicates, is responsible for generation, have been put on notice.

Starting with the governor’s defeat in his party’s primaries, he received the message of rejection for having been an incompetent colony administrator but above all for having defended and justified the private energy companies that are causing so much suffering to our people.

But the breaking point came in the middle of the week. After nearly two weeks of several towns in the south enduring a complete lack of electricity, which in many cases also means a lack of water that is pumped by electric pumps, under a streak of intense heat, a large-scale blackout occurred in the northern part of the island.

More than a million people remained in the dark for over ten hours. The University of Puerto Rico had to cancel classes, and the Medical Center and health offices had to cancel appointments for their patients. In short, the daily lives of the majority of the country were affected.

But since this does not matter to these privatizers, they did not even face the people to explain the causes. It was after several days that they came up with the excuse that the trees were to blame. And they are waiting for emergency federal funds to carry out tree-clearing that will last for 3 years and will begin on July 1. In other words, instead of systematically pruning as the public company used to do, they are trying to deforest wherever there are power lines to make their work easier, at the expense of devastating consequences for the climate and our people.

The incompetence of Luma, which has been here for three years already and had a year before starting the contract to get to know the system, is inconceivable. And that’s how the people have been responding. From the first night of the almost total blackout, they began protesting in front of La Fortaleza, the governor’s residence, and several demonstrations have already been called, including nightly protests with pots and pans banging at 8 p.m.

It is predicted that Luma and Genera have little time left because the people are demanding that their contracts be CANCELED and that energy return to the hands of the people.

From Puerto Rico, speaking to Radio Clarín of Colombia, Berta Joubert-Ceci

Join the Struggle-La Lucha Telegram channel