The Senate confirmed yesterday the appointments of three individuals to two government bodies that handle the marketing of the CNMI to tourists and the stimulation of economic development in the NMI respectively.
The Senate unanimously confirmed during a session the gubernatorial appointments of Thomas Liu to the Marianas Visitors Authority board and former House speaker Rafael S. Demapan and Joaquin T. Omar to the Commonwealth Development Authority board.
Liu told Saipan Tribune yesterday that this was the first time that he has held a government position in the CNMI.
“I am honored to serve on the MVA board. Hopefully, with the knowledge and experience I have, I can share [them] with all the members to stimulate tourism growth,” he said.
As this is his first time on a government board of directors, Liu noted that he would be stepping back and will be a supporting figure for the board as he learns the ropes.
“I would like to appreciate and commend the governor [and Lt. Gov. Arnold I. Palacios] for their confidence in me and for nominating me,” Demapan said in an interview. “Being a former member of the Legislature, I believe I am able to see and understand and foresee current situations and financial dilemmas.”
Demapan said he would be prioritizing local entrepreneurs in an attempt to create a local economy that is independent of foreign investors.
“I also encourage our local people to take advantage of all our programs that are provided to make sure they [become] entrepreneurs,” Demapan added.
All three confirmed nominations were present during the session.