The Indigenous Affairs Office wants to secure the management rights to three latte sites on Saipan.
Many of these sites are currently under the auspices of the Department of Public Lands but are currently under conservation by the Historic Preservation Office.
The Indigenous Affairs Office wants the right to these sites transferred to it.
In an email, IAO resident executive director Roman Tudela informed DPL Secretary Marianne Teregeyo that his office is ready and awaiting the designation of three latte sites.
“My office stands ready to commit in honoring our Chamorro ancestors by preserving, protecting, and promoting the Chamorro heritage,” said Tudela in his email.
The email informs Teregeyo that Tudela will soon submit a proposal to the Saipan and Northern Islands Legislative Delegation that requests the funding to carry out the preservation and enhancements of the latte sites as soon as the sites are turned over to its office.
According to Tudela, the request for rights to the three latte sites in Kagman was inspired by his visits to the area.
“I toured three latte sites with the Historic Preservation Office personnel and I was overwhelmed with sadness at the neglect of our historical sites,” said Tudela.
He believes that, although the site is under preservation work, it should still be promoted and that these sites should be open to residents and tourists.
These sites are not only ancient artifacts but they are symbolic of the indigenous Chamorro and Carolinian heritage, he added.
He believes the sites should remain accessible to those of Northern Marianas descent.