Argentina’s Anti-Corruption Office (OA) outsourced its communication, press and social media to a lobbying firm with close ties to the PRO Party of President Mauricio Macri, a media investigation has found.
The OA — led by former PRO Party lawmaker Laura Alonso — hired the lobby group Consuasor from 2017 through 2018 for a total 990,000 pesos, news portal LetraP reported, after gaining access to documents through a freedom of information (FOI) request.
But Alonso’s office tried to hide its connection with the firm by directly hiring its two owners Facundo Sosa Liprandi and Alejandro Giúdice, the portal suggested.
The OA’s monthly payments to the pair, of 44,000 and 38,500 pesos, respectively, raised questions because Consuasor’s Communication Coordinator Belén Alcacer was working as Alonso’s press secretary despite not appearing in the OA’s book keeping.
Alonso cancelled the contracts with the lobby group’s owners after the relationship between the OA and Conuasor was revealed in the Página 12 newspaper in January.
Article 13 of Argentina’s Public Ethics Law prohibits lobby firms from working in State-run offices.
Since 2015, Sosa Liprandi and Alejandro Giúdice have secured contracts with the national Justice, Labour, Environment and Defence ministries, the Salta provincial government and the office of PRO party Senator Federico Pinedo, LetraP reported.