Fernández: “Is it reasonable that we allocate such an amount of money to the most opulent city?”
President Alberto Fernández questioned again on Tuesday the precautionary measure of the Supreme Court in favor of the Buenos Aires district for co-participating funds and wondered if it is “reasonable that the most opulent city in Argentina” should be allocated “similar amount of money “, when what is being discussed in the Buenos Aires district is the possibility of expanding the subway network and in the north of the country the provision of drinking water for the most vulnerable population.
“All this that we are talking about costs 220,000 million pesos, which is the same amount that the city of Buenos Aires claims as co-participation. Placing a hand on the heart, Is it reasonable that we allocate such an amount of money to the most opulent city in Argentina that we are going to get it from the same source from which the resources come from to carry out these works?“said the president when leading a new meeting of the jurisdictional committee in Santiago del Estero.
The president was accompanied by the governors Gerardo Zamora (Santiago), Jorge Capitanich (Chaco) and Omar Perotti (Santa Fe); and the interior ministers Edward of Peter; and Public Works, Gabriel Katopodis.
“I am very Buenos Aires, proud to be Buenos Aires, but I am the son of a Riojano and I was always worried about this inequality. So, one of the first things I entrusted when I took office was to give importance to the north because there are issues that we must resolve and we cannot become the distracted”, he pointed out at the beginning of his speech, in which he added: “We are convinced that the federal country of which the Constitution speaks is not a declamation, but rather an order”.
When reviewing the water works that are being carried out and those that are missing in that region, the President pointed out that “they cost close to 220,000 million pesos, almost the same as what the city of Buenos Aires is claiming as co-participation”.
The hydric region of the Bajos Submeridionales -which occupies the northern part of the province of Santa Fe, the south of Chaco and the southeast of the province of Santiago del Estero- is a geographical space of approximately 5 million hectares, marked by periods of floods and droughts that generate important negative consequences on production, the environment and the social conditions of the inhabitants of the area.
The national government and the provinces are advancing in a Master Plan which, with an investment of 366 million dollars allocated to 33 projects, aims to achieve intelligent water management in this hydrological region, in addition to enhancing the value of productive land.
Referring to the ruling of the Supreme Court in favor of the claim for the co-participation made by the City of Buenos Aires, Fernández affirmed: “Now, with one hand on the heart and looking objectively, is it reasonable that the most opulent city In which I was born and love, let us allocate such an amount of money that will come from the same source that was planned to do those works?
“Do you know where these works come from to a large extent? From the co-participation part that the national State has, how do you think the national routes are built, how are the water works paid for, how do they help to build schools, how are they paid for? the Universal Assignments (AUH) and the Alimentar Card in the interior of the country? With the co-participation quota that corresponds to the national Government”answered.
And then he added: “What a crazy country I’m living in. How come they don’t realize that we are allocating such an amount of money to a city where they are debating whether to have more subway while in the provinces they are debating how they can have more drinking water? “
“How can we live in peace with our conscience,” he asked to the applause of those present and continued: “While we are debating whether the city of Buenos Aires has more vertical gardens, in the provinces they are debating primary, elemental things.”
Fernández recalled that, after the Court’s ruling, “On Friday I said that the Supreme Court could not comply with the order and today I say the same thing. I say that since I do not have a budget, the sentence is not budgeted, because of the Argentine legal system I cannot pay sentences because it does not allow me to. Therefore, The only thing that remains for me is to use some remnants of bonds with which this government paid the Government of Santa Fe in a sentence handed down by another government and that was not complied with. There are first class cities and second class provinces.”he claimed.
“When I see these numbers, I only get irritated because they are asking me to send to 203 square kilometers the same amount that 80,000 square kilometers need in northern Argentina,” he said.