LibDay proceeds go to SMO programs

The 2018 Liberation Day Committee has turned over the remaining money it has collected from the festivity. A total of $3,000 was funneled to the Saipan Mayor’s Office Dog Control Program, the CNMI Museum, and the Karidat Social Services—with all the funds coming from the leftover funds collected from the 2018 Liberation Day Festival.

LibDay Committee chair Joe Ayuyu Jr., along with president Louis Rodgers, presented Dog Control Program manager Spencer Marchadesch, CNMI Museum director Danny Aquino, and Karidat executive director Lauri Ogumoro $1,000 each.

Ayuyu noted that the committee agreed to give the remaining proceeds to these three programs prior to handing out the funds,

“This year was a successful year. We want to thank all our sponsors, everybody that donated, everybody that helped, the volunteers, of course,” he said. “We cannot forget the Saipan Mayor’s Office for helping us out, including the community.”

According to Saipan Mayor David M. Apatang, the committee is a non-profit, so all leftover proceeds would go back to the community. Rodgers said that some of the proceeds were set aside to kickstart the 2019 Liberation Day festivities.

“We want to thank [Ayuyu and Rodgers] for working with us during our liberation activities,” said Apatang in a statement. He added that Ayuyu would be stepping down as LibDay Committee chairman, while Rodgers would continue on as president.

According to Karidat’s Ogumoro, she plans to use the $1,000 for the program’s new office at the former Sister Remedios Early Childhood Development Center.

“…This money will go toward helping to pay for the parking lot,” said Ogumoro, adding that the Saipan Zoning Board did not allow them to park in front. “…We have to construct a new parking lot,” she said, with over 20 stalls to accommodate other government offices in the building, such as the Pacific Ombudsman for Humanitarian Law, the Marianas Behavioral Health Institute, and in the near future, the CNMI Drug Court.

The cash for the NMI Museum, according to Aquino, would go a long way.

“We want to continue to use the money donated to aggressively build the remaining structures [in the area],” he said, referring to the old Japanese Laboratory. He noted that the museum is looking to raise $300,000 to set up a fence around the building and the storage building next to it.

Aquino is looking at using the pavilion behind the museum as a storage house for artifacts since the old storage at the former Kalingo building was bought out by the Marianas Visiting Nurses, requiring the museum to move the artifacts stored in it.

“It was a significant amount of building property, so we are now transferring it out to the new building,” he said.
Marchadesch noted that he has yet to specify where the money would go. He noted, though, that the Dog Control Program captured about 1,000 dogs a year.

Erwin Encinares | Reporter
Erwin Charles Tan Encinares holds a bachelor’s degree from the Chiang Kai Shek College and has covered a wide spectrum of assignments for the Saipan Tribune. Encinares is the paper’s political reporter.

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