25 Aug 2012

CNMI's Governor says lawsuit against power deal politically motivated

4:28 am on 25 August 2012

The Governor of the Northern Marianas Benigno Fitial believes the lawsuit to stop a power generation agreement with a US company is politically motivated.

A CNMI Superior Court judge has issued a temporary restraining order stopping the pursuit of the controversial agreement.

The secret deal involves Governor Fitial, the former attorney general Edward Buckingham, the Commonwealth Utilities Corporation and the Delaware incorporated company, Saipan Development LLC.

The parties have been negotiating a 190 million US dollar deal extending over 25 years.

It involves the Delaware company building a power plant and providing electricity to the state utility.

The injunctions had been sought by Representative Janet Maratita.

Governor Fitial, who is in American Samoa, says the suit is a move by his political foes to discredit him.

"This is a political system, the Senators, they are in the opposite parties, so they will try everything that they can to model my name."

Governor Fitial is attending a meeting of the US Coral Reef Task Force in the Territory.