Inos, Naraja, Govendo win retention bids


The Commonwealth saw a majority of votes leaning toward retaining three members of the CNMI judicial branch in this year’s general elections—Supreme Court Justice Perry Borja Inos, Superior Court Presiding Judge Robert Naraja, and Superior Court Associate Judge Kenneth Govendo.

After over 10 hours of tabulating ballots from Tuesday evening to early Wednesday morning, the Commonwealth Election Commission and its staff found that majority voted yes to the retention of all three.

Unofficially, Inos received a total of 9,684 votes in favor of his retention while 2,542 voted against his retention.

Naraja received a total of 10,088 votes in favor of his retention while 1,859 voted against him keeping his position as presiding judge.

Govendo also saw a large number of votes in favor of his retention with a total of 9,464 voting to keep him in office. There were 2,366 who voted against his retention.

The Saipan Tribune was unable to reach out to the three yesterday to obtain comments about the election results.

In early voting ballots, Inos received 5,976 votes in favor of his retention and 1,360 votes against him.

For absentee ballots, Inos had 809 votes in his favor while 181 voted against his retention. Absentee ballots are still being accepted until Nov. 17.

In Precinct 1, 760 votes were in favor of Inos’ retention and 201 voted no. In Precinct 2, 203 voted for his retention while 66 voted not to retain him. Precinct 3 had 527 votes in favor of Inos’ retention and 135 not in favor of retaining him. In Precinct 4, 434 voted to keep Inos in office while a whopping 414 voted to kick him out. In Precinct 5, 381 voted to keep Inos in office while 101 voted against his retention. In Precinct 6 and 7, Rota and Tinian, 287 and 307 voted in favor of the retention, respectively. Voting no, Rota saw 41 who did not support the retention while Tinian saw 43.

In the early voting, Naraja gained 6,238 in favor of his retention but 1,151 opposed his retention.

In the absentee ballot calculations, 829 voted that Naraja remain in office while 135 voted him out.

In Precinct 1, 830 votes were in favor of Naraja’s retention and 136 were not. In Precinct 2, 217 were in favor of the retention while 56 were not. In Precinct 3, 577 voted in favor of the retention while 100 opposed. Precinct 4 had 470 who voted in support of the retention with 79 opposed it. In Precinct 5, 389 voted in favor of his retention while 94 opposed. On Rota or Precinct 6, 258 voters said yes to retaining Naraja and on Tinian, 280 voted yes. Naraja saw little opposition from Rota with just 64 opposing votes and even less opposition from Tinian with 44.

In early voting ballots, Govendo had 5,830 votes in support of his retention while 1,467 opposed.

Absentee ballots reflected 761 votes in favor of retention with 215 opposing votes.

In Precinct 1, Govendo received 775 votes in favor of retention and 176 votes not to retain. In Precinct 2, Govendo received 213 yes votes to his retention and 57 no votes. Precinct 3 had 528 votes in support of retention for Govendo and 141 opposing votes. Precinct 4 votes showed 445 in support of the retention with 101 opposing the retention. In Precinct 5, 378 votes were in favor of Govendo’s retention and 102 opposed. On Rota, Govendo received 264 yes votes, while on Tinian, he received 270 yes votes. Only 57 opposed Govendo’s retention on Rota and 50 voted no on Tinian.

Kimberly Bautista Esmores | Reporter
Kimberly Bautista Esmores has covered a wide range of news beats, including the community, housing, crime, and more. She now covers sports for the Saipan Tribune. Contact her at
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