While the CNMI Republican House majority continues to defend Governor Fitial and comes up with excuses as to why he should not be impeached, I would like to ask them a few questions:
1. When disgraced former Attorney General Edward T. Buckingham fled Saipan and had law officials to shield him from being served a penal summons, do you honestly believe this was not orchestrated by Governor Fitial? Do you really think that Governor Fitial’s personal driver just showed up on his own in the wee hours of the morning to offer a ride to Bucky and his wife Pam? Do you think it is acceptable that federally funded “Human Trafficking Unit” vehicles are being used to transport people and their luggage? Do you think the law officials involved just decided to give AG Buckingham a "royal escort" using federally funded vehicles? Do you think manhandling a news journalist and physically stopping her from doing her job while standing on public grounds is acceptable police behavior? Do you think using law officials to thwart a penal summons from being served is an abuse of power? If not for the FBI serving the summons and a journalist filming this fiasco, don't you think Bucky would have gotten away without being served the summons and the public would know nothing about it? Shouldn't you be thanking OPA, the FBI, and KSPN News reporter Tina Sablan and condemning Governor Fitial and Ed Buckingham and the law officials who attempted to obstruct justice?
2. Regarding Governor Fitial's sole-source $190 million, 25-year power generation contract with a five-day-old shady company that has been linked to an ex-convict, aren't you concerned about the huge cost to us taxpayers? If the cost of building a 50-megawatt plant is estimated by experts to be about $50 million as previously reported, isn't the $190-million price tag a complete rip-off? Aren't you concerned that future generations will have to make huge payments on this overpriced power plant for 25 consecutive years, even if it may not be needed in the future? Isn’t alternative and renewable energy technology developing rapidly right now all over the world, and don’t we think it will be even more affordable within the next decade, let alone 25 years? Why aren’t you doing the math or why don’t you get someone who knows math to explain to you that the $190 million is only a drop in the bucket compared to the associated and indirect costs, which could possibly end up costing us taxpayers more than $2 billion? Why aren’t you concerned that the governor and the escaped fugitive/former AG Ed Buckingham are the signatories on the contract, but both of them have ZERO experience with regard to power generation and diesel generators? Why aren’t you upset that this secretive contract is not even needed right now, according to the former executive director of CUC and other experts? And if this diesel power plant truly is needed, then why are we not following procurement regulations and BIDDING IT OUT? Isn’t that why we have procurement regulations? To ensure fair bidding? Why was this contract so secretive anyway? Shouldn't anything that is going to cost $190 million be thoroughly researched and analyzed by experts and APPROVED by CNMI taxpayers, since it is OUR MONEY, not Governor Fitial's money? And shouldn't any power contracts be coming from the office of CUC and not the greedy hands of Governor Fitial?
3. Why are you so reluctant to impeach the governor? Is it because you are part of the Republican Party and he is in charge of your party? Is your loyalty with the people, or is it with the governor? With 16 articles of impeachment, do you honestly believe none of them are true? If you think at least one of the articles of impeachment is true, do you not realize this is grounds for impeachment? What about neglect of duty? Do you think Governor Fitial is neglecting the people of the CNMI when he takes his wife and his press secretary on a three-week junket using taxpayer money? Do you think this is acceptable, when people are dying because their Medicaid is no longer being accepted so they cannot have access to doctors and medicine that is needed to keep them alive?
These are only a few questions that I ask the Republican House Majority. A friend stated that we should go and meet with these leaders. But my question to him is, is it not their job to meet with us? Why can’t they take a lesson from Congressman Kilili Sablan and host a public forum? Is it because they are afraid we will come with tough questions and will see right through their bogus excuses? Someone needs to remind them that they are PUBLIC SERVANTS and they are supposed to listen to our people. But these leaders must do more than just listen to our people-they must also listen to their conscience!
My dearest friends and family, we all know that each year Governor Fitial has been in office, things have continually gotten worse, with absolutely no signs of improvement. There are no investors pouring in to the CNMI like he promised. There are no peanut butter factories. Or shoe factories. He has failed to deliver on any of his “Better Times” campaign promises, but he has certainly not failed to deliver us a ton of excuses, lies, and shame. When you have your personal driver selling ice out of your own car, that is SHAMEFUL. When you use taxpayer money to travel the world with your wife and press secretary while our people are dying, that is SHAMEFUL. But when you break out a federal detainee from prison to get a midnight massage, that is ILLEGAL. When you order public safety officials to stop a criminal from being served a penal summons, that is ILLEGAL. When you use a state of emergency as a disguise to pass out sole-source contracts that are detrimental to our people and ignore procurement laws and regulations, that is not only ILLEGAL...it is also an ABUSE OF POWER.
We have two more years under Governor Fitial's reign. My question to you is, can we really afford another two years? Look around you. Look at the deplorable condition of the CNMI. And yet, Governor Fitial still has people defending him, trying to explain that he "inherited" these problems. Yes, Governor Fitial inherited problems. But he was ELECTED to solve our problems, NOT ADD TO THEM! Why can’t some people get this through their thick skulls?
Governor Fitial likes to refer to himself as the "Father of the CNMI." But my question is, what kind of father goes on three-week junkets around the world while his "children" are left at home to suffer and die? What kind of father would get first-class medical check-ups and treatment at the finest hospitals in the United States and the Philippines, but not even leave any money for his "children" to buy medicine for when they are sick? What kind of father would make sole-source deals that will bankrupt his "children" for 25 years? I’m sorry, but these are not the actions of a "Father of the CNMI." These are actions of greed, gluttony, and abuse of power.
Lives are at stake right now, and so is the future of our children. If you stand by and allow this abuse to continue, then you are just as guilty as the perpetrators. Corruption and evil only exist because good people do nothing. Please, join the fight. Do what is right. It is never too late to do the right thing. And the right thing to do right now is to put pressure on our leaders to IMPEACH this governor. As I told a friend, the impeachment is only the beginning. We will have to work together to solve the CNMI’s problems. But we cannot solve any problems while we are constantly battling a governor who continues to drive our poor economy deeper in to debt and is on the verge of ruining our children's future for 25 full years. It must end now, before it is too late.
Thank you to all the great people living in the CNMI and abroad who are taking a stand and speaking out. When we succeed, it will be because of brave people like you who decided that these beautiful islands are worth fighting for. It is no longer just about us...it is about our children. Pot fabot, let us do the right thing, right now.
And if this Republican House majority FAILS to impeach Governor Fitial, then let us remember this and be sure to IMPEACH them from office in November. We need courageous leaders right now who are loyal to the people, not spineless leaders who are loyal to a dictator.
May God bless the good people of the CNMI.