Froilan resigns from Covenant, to work on casino initiative

Posted on Mar 15 2012

Rep. Froilan Tenorio submitted yesterday his resignation from the Covenant Party, saying not being politically identified with any political party—should he run again—will provide a better chance for the three initiatives he and others will be working on to succeed. These initiatives include one that seeks to legalize casino gambling on Saipan.

Tenorio, a former governor and speaker, said he has not decided if he’s running for re-election in Precinct 1. But he said if he decides to run again, he will run as an independent candidate.

He said he and several others will be working to get three popular initiatives approved by voters in the general election.

“And I feel that we have a better chance of succeeding in this effort if I am not politically identified with any party. We need to have the support of everyone. One of these initiatives is to legalize casino gambling on Saipan. We must have a new source for our government because we are not generating enough,” Tenorio said in a one-page letter addressed to Covenant Party chair Gregorio M. Camacho.

Tenorio also asked for the support of the Covenant Party for this initiative, and extends his best wishes to the party in the election. The midterm election will be on Nov. 6.

He was the author of the Saipan casino bill that the Senate killed in 2010. The Senate killed a similar proposal last week.

Copies of Tenorio’s resignation letter were also sent to Covenant Party titular head Lt. Gov. Eloy S. Inos, Rep. Ralph Demapan (Cov-Saipan), Rep. Edmund Villagomez (Cov-Saipan), and Rep. Ramon D. Palacios (Cov-Saipan).

Demapan, when asked for comment, said he’s not surprised by Tenorio’s move.

“Anyone who knew him understood why he did it. I would guess he is on a mission and will continue to fight for what he believes is right for his people,” he told Saipan Tribune.

Villagomez said, “That is his decision and I have to respect it.”

Other Covenant Party members also left the party and joined Gov. Benigno R. Fitial at the Republican Party, which the governor now heads again.

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