Lawsuit isn’t about me!


It is hard for citizens to take the local government to court whenever there’s fundamental violation of law. Understood why people shy from it. Most folks aren’t conversant what the issues entail plus it cost a lot of money to litigate it. Not interested in the notoriety or ignominy spinning out of the lawsuit.

But it’s time to stamp out the insidious tentacles of corruption! Must protect the wellbeing and dignity of the innocent from kleptocrats.

The authority to appropriate funds is vested solely in the legislature per the constitution. No such authority is granted legislative delegations!

Appalling how Victor Hokog and Ralph Torres exploited illegal path to amass public funds that benefited the Hokog business interest. Biktot was the evil chief architect of the resolution rumored to be assisted by Raffy who drafted amendments as the resolution moved through stages. Raffy was then the lt. governor. Ever heard of the separation of powers, Raffy?

Does Biktot Hokog know the constitutional prohibition voting on measures that would subsequently benefit him or his clan? Ignorance of constitutional laws isn’t an excuse, people!

So both are full participants in the siphoning of public funds illegally. Goes to show that both must have flunked their civics courses ignorant that the power of the purse rests with the legislative branch. It’s basic stuff! How could they have missed it? Was the $400,000 for a public purpose? Isn’t this a must provision in the appropriation process?

Now the partners in crime (Raffy and Biktot) have seen fit to spin the issue away from the obvious constitutional infraction focusing on the benefits of the MV Luta. Question: Is the service factually of benefit to ALL three inhabited islands?

Simple economics: It’s known in economics as the law of “supply and demand.” Take a look at the evacuation of a lot of our people on Rota to Guam and elsewhere given poor economic conditions. This evacuation (relocation) meant far less people to buy basic commodities in grocery stores at home.

That consumer items hardly move (because there are less people buying) it also slows down shipping operations. Thus it automatically triggers an increase in shipping charges so the company could rake-in some profit. In doing so, this cost is passed right back to consumers. It means the coming of the MV Luta to Rota is useless because it has been sitting at the dock for three months since its arrival.

It must secure two issues: tariff charges approval and U.S. Coast Guard certification. Thus, the MV Luta can’t bring in third party cargo under its own name.

Hokog said that he has “no interest” in the $400K that went to his family business. Truth is, sir: Why then did you serve as the chief architect and evil genius of the funds in question? Did you even recuse yourself from its disposition? Why would you lie in perpetuity? Are you sure you haven’t received money from the Mermaid as family? Sorry, we could easily discern the truth from the apparent, sir!

Interesting the disbursement of the funds by the secretary of finance, the custodian of public funds, released without legal appropriation. Remember the action of a former secretary of Finance who refused to follow orders and subsequently resigned rather than commit constitutional violation on funds that were never appropriated by the Legislature? Why was the money released without an appropriation or a guiding contract on method of repayment? Isn’t it public funds, Ms. Secretary?

Deaf, mute, and blind: It piqued my curiosity why the sublimely, if not, ridiculously quiet lawmakers from Saipan hiding behind the shadows of lamed courage. Is your ugly silence a confirmation that you failed your civics courses in high school therefore the obvious ignorance? Do you have percipiency what entails a republican form of government?

I’m not talking toxic local republican charge. It’s a governmental concept, people! Evidently, didn’t you take the oath of office to uphold the laws of the land?

Meanwhile, CUC’s decision to charge consumers some $5 million in energy loss merits a legislative oversight. Please ask them to cite authority that grants them forcing customers arbitrary fees coming from, yes, and CUC’s management incompetency!

Perhaps this explains why even the flame trees refuse to blossom this year. If it’s caused by old age, fine. But if it is triggered by the stench of corruption, understood, too!

Halo? Received an anonymous call last Friday at around 11:20am of a big fire truck allegedly delivering water at convicted former governor Benigno Fitial’s residence. The red huge truck left around 11:40am. What’s newsy about it?

The fire truck is government equipment. Its use skips the services of privately owned water buffaloes. Would this service be available for the poor or those without political connections? It confirms that the service is limited to the “peerless corrupt” bunch of former and current officials. Who are you serving anyway in the elitist, arrogant, and corrupt ill disposition of government equipment?

The taxpayers deserve an answer on this issue, e.g., who permitted water delivery using a government fire truck. I want name, rank, serial number, and authority to abuse government property and an explanation if the “new” service would be available to others who may need water in remote or farm areas.

Corruption is in full bloom, friends. Must be a hybrid seed that thrives during the drought season. But then this lifestyle is limited to the peerless privileged few. The public auditor must descend, probe, and cause for the prosecution of this abuse! Is anarchy the latest fad among the political elite? Please, don’t play with civil frustration and discontentment for you’re toying with a lethal explosive.

John S. Del Rosario Jr. | Contributing Author
John DelRosario Jr. is a former publisher of the Saipan Tribune and a former secretary of the Department of Public Lands.

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