Trust in government sinks


A court in Hong Kong has found factual ties between NMI local politicians and their favorite gambling firm from the outset or 2013. What I call the “quintuplet” denied that the firm paid for their trips. This revelation only decimates or trashes trust in our governmental institutions.

The denial took a lot of fancy footing. Was it the decision granting a non-applicant exclusive rights to run a single license casino here?

Woefully troubling the deal struck that includes zero taxation of casino income. Macau levies 39 percent on its casino income. Why in the world is the casino here the only one in the global gambling industry exempt from taxation?

Perhaps the quintuplet: Raffy Torres, Biktot Hokog, and Tinian senators Francisco Cruz, Francisco Borja, and Raffy Demapan could explain why the denial of their ties with the firm. It’s only a trip, so why shy from the truth? That explains why the “tiptoe” syndrome hailing from their treatment of the casino law. It’s down to an art!

Perhaps they’re out guarding the secrecy in their preconceived decision to hand the license to their favorite trip sponsor (not an applicant) while trashing the other two real applicants. This raises the specter of suspicion even deeper, doesn’t it? Why were you folks singing Silent Night when it’s supposed to be Joy to the World?

The details of the deal to which we’re not privy remains in shreds of suspicion and definitely drains trust in the institutions of our local government. When trust no longer exists it ruins everything else downstairs.

Gomer Pyle would be yelling, “kerrup, kerrup, kerrup.” Someone ought to tell him it’s the newest tool to strengthening governance! You could access the story on the following website:

China crackdown: China warns Macau and Vegas against luring its people to gamble overseas. The public security minister is out to completely cut promotions in China to stem money laundering and capital outflow.

Some 18 staff promoters from Crown Resorts in Australia have been held for questioning. The security minister is also on the lookout for promo agents from all over, including South Korea.

Meanwhile, kudos to gaming commissioner Joseph Reyes for advising Best Sunshine to veer off any further expenses on non-casino activities until its $7-billion project is fully complete. It’s a sure way to ascertaining that its promised integrated resort is built to completion.

Power generation: The CUC board has reportedly pulled dealing with an intermediary (GPSM) in the planned purchase of a 10-megawatt generator. It now wants to deal directly with the manufacturer.

Caught with its pants down, it had no choice but to pull it up lest it becomes an immoral lewd show against ratepayers. The planned purchase would involve bond flotation to the tune of $30 million.

It makes it more vital that the issue is dealt with real competency because we would be there to demand total transparency. No more “tip-toe” syndrome involving public funds! Leave this corrupt tool on imperial Capital Hill.

The Toelkes are out spreading their wings to rein in money while their political connection is steady and firm.

For instance, I heard Robert Toelkes had a recent meeting with Sen. Sixto Igisomar at an out-of-the-way restaurant. Sixto was all smiles, though he looked apprehensive. Hope he didn’t compromise fiduciary duty in the Mango meeting.

Mr. 6-2 must employ due diligence to demand information on Toelkes’ failed JFK high school project in Guam and whatever else it could scrounge from the Alter City plan. Must learn to work with sound credibility! Why would it rely on a company that went bankrupt last year?

Reportedly, Albert Taitano, a board member from Rota, recused from voting. Good call in that I also learned he’s an employee of the Toelkes. He doesn’t have to muddy the water. Let Mr. 6-2 stir it full measure! I’d pace these issues in the interest of ratepayers, free! It matters to me the innocent is protected!

It’s good to know that Rep. Ed Propst would file a TRO on the generator purchase so he sees with clarity what the deal entails. Good job, Ed! I mean if ratepayers would eventually be smothered with intermittent increases in other CUC services to meet debt service it’s timely that you intervene now

Magoo on SOCA

My friend Magoo isn’t enamored to hear another pompous speech about the state of the NMI. “It’s the same tired song sung on a different day,” he exclaimed.

But it’s good to listen to the SOCA trumpeted just so we analyze what the beast is all about and whether it is a realistic assessment of serious people’s issues!

Would the SOCA discuss a plan-based economic blueprint or would it slide into what’s known in economics as “temperamental” offshoots as is the case today—second guessing—not educated guess.

Is the fickle single economic engine safe in the event geopolitical tension in the region escalates (U.S.-Sino) shutting down Chinese investments here? Would it include casino promo to deal with the eventual opening of Japanese casino in less than two years?

Would there be at least a faint commitment for economic diversification? How would it resolve income for the 51 percent earning poverty income level and below?

Would wishful spouts include a solid plan to improve wages and salaries that have been stagnant for the last 20 years? We shall see when the last word is uttered. One helluva journey ahead getting the ducks in order!

The road to economic revival and recovery is an arduous task. But we rely on the “solutions driven” team to provide real answers to the deepening familial economic hardship.

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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