Former governor of Puerto Rico Aníbal Acevedo Vilá made a special stop in Humboldt Park on April 15 to promote his recently released autobiographical novel, Así Fue…¿Y Ahora Qué? Reflexiones Sobre el Cuatrenio 2004-2008 y sus Repercusiones Para el Futuro (That’s How it Went…And Now What? Reflections on the Four-year Period 2004-2008 and the Repercussions for the Future).
Ex-governor Acevedo Vilá spoke briefly to an audience at El Quijote bookstore (2546 W. Division) before signing books and taking pictures with local community members. Acevedo Vilá referred to the book as a “photo” of his governorship, which included “difficult economic and personal challenges.”
According to Acevedo Vilá the book covers significant events that shaped his experience as governor, such as Puerto Rico’s economic recession, the division amongst Puerto Rican political parties, the Puerto Rican government shutdown due to lack of funds, and most notably, the corruption charges placed against him by the Federal Bureau of Investigation in March 2008.
Although he was eventually found innocent of all FBI charges, Acevedo Vilá commented that this period was extremely difficult for him and his family. In his book the ex-governor speculates on reasons he believes he was targeted by the FBI. Included amongst these reasons is his public stance on condemning the FBI for the assassination of Filiberto Ojeda Ríos, former leader of Ejército Popular Boricua or Los Macheteros.
Former political prisoner Ricardo Jiménez was also present at the book signing. Acevedo Vilá, who publicly supported the release of the Puerto Rican political prisoners, affirmed his commitment to their release at the event. “Regardless of what your political ideology is, the prisoners have been incarcerated more than enough time,” he said. “I told Ricardo that I would be willing to help in the campaign, including writing letters.
Before visiting Humboldt Park the ex-governor of Puerto Rico visited DePaul University and the East Chicago Public Library. During his presentation at El Quijote, audience members asked Acevedo Vilá if he was considering going back into electoral politics to which he responded, “No”, adding, “there are other ways to serve Puerto Rico that don’t include being in an electoral position.”
by Marisol Rodríguez