Gov. Benigno R. Fitial nominated yesterday Sgt. James C. Deleon Guerrero to serve as Department of Public Safety commissioner. The Senate Committee on Executive Appointments and Government Investigations said it stands ready to hold a public hearing on the nomination once the required documents are submitted to the Senate.
The appointment requires the Senate's advice and consent.
Deleon Guerrero prevailed in his lawsuit against DPS over the department's discriminatory practices in promotion and hiring.
The nomination comes almost a year after the DPS commissioner post became vacant and was filled alternately-in an acting capacity-by deputy commissioner Ambrosio Ogumoro and director of Police Aniceto Ogumoro. The two are brothers.
Fitial's failure to nominate a permanent DPS commissioner is one of the new articles in an impeachment resolution that the House leadership formally introduced yesterday.
The governor sent out two letters and a memo yesterday: One letter was addressed to Deleon Guerrero nominating him for the DPS commissioner post; the second letter was to Senate President Jude Hofschneider (R-Tinian) officially forwarding his nomination for Senate confirmation; and the third, a memo to department and activity heads notifying them of the new acting DPS commissioner.
Sen. Frank Cruz (R-Tinian), chairman of the Senate EAGI Committee, said yesterday that his panel looks forward to receiving the required documents from the nominee, including a copy of a statement of financial interests filed with and stamped by the Office of the Public Auditor, résumé, police clearance, drug test receipt, and drug test result.
“These documents have to be submitted first so that the committee members would be able to know about the nominee, and then we would set a public hearing on the nomination,” Cruz said.
Cruz, a former police officer, said having a DPS commissioner that's appointed by the governor and confirmed by the Senate “protects and preserves the integrity” of DPS.
His EAGI Committee reviews the governor's appointments, for report and recommendation to the full Senate.
House Speaker Joseph Deleon Guerrero (IR-Saipan), meanwhile, said the governor's appointment of a new acting DPS commissioner for Senate confirmation does not have a bearing on the impeachment resolution.
Beginning on or about March 2012 and continuing until the Jan. 14 filing of the articles of impeachment, the governor failed to nominate to the Senate a nominee for consideration and confirmation to serve as DPS commissioner, the impeachment resolution partly states.