Road between Joeten Hafa Adai and IPI casino will be temporarily closed


Ray N. Yumul

Department of Public Works Secretary Ray N. Yumul will be issuing before noon today, Tuesday, a directive for the emergency closure of Hibiscus Lane—the road between Joeten Hafa Adai and Imperial Pacific International (CNMI) LLC casino/resort building in Garapan—for safety reasons due to Typhoon Mawar.

Yumul told Saipan Tribune yesterday afternoon that the emergency closure is in line with Gov. Arnold I. Palacios’ declaration of Tropical Storm Condition 2 for Saipan. He said the closure will be in place until further notice.

The DPW secretary said he does not anticipate reopening Hibiscus Lane until after a physical check affirms the integrity of IPI’s tower crane, or unless it is taken down.

“I am in discussion with the Attorney General’s Office on my legal options,” Yumul said.

He said they have not received a response from the Commonwealth Casino Commission about his request last May 1 to inspect IPI’s casino/resort building for safety. The building has been closed since the COVID-19 pandemic happened.

In his request for authority addressed to CCC board vice chair Rafael S. Demapan, Yumul said that an inspection is necessary to assess the existing condition of the electrical, mechanical, and standard components of the building, as well as to verify the integrity of the building and its welding connections. He added that they will also conduct a visual inspection of Tower Cranes No. 1 and 5 at the building.

Ferdie De La Torre | Reporter
Ferdie Ponce de la Torre is a senior reporter of Saipan Tribune. He has a bachelor’s degree in journalism and has covered all news beats in the CNMI. He is a recipient of the CNMI Supreme Court Justice Award. Contact him at ferdie_delatorre@Saipantribune.com

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