Call for impeachment of CNMI governor

3:10 pm on 19 November 2019

The Northern Marianas' House of Representatives doesn't need to wait for the governor to be indicted or arrested to start impeachment proceedings, an opposition lawmaker says.

CNMI Governor Ralp DLG Torres.

Ralph Torres. Photo: Office of the Governor of CNMI

Ralph Torres is currently in the middle of an ongoing FBI probe looking into multiple possible violations of federal laws that also involves his family and the company, Imperial Pacific International, which is building a casino resort on Saipan.

The investigation has resulted in a number of search warrants being actioned across Saipan.

Opposition Representative Christina Sablan said her colleagues did not have to wait for a grand jury to issue an indictment or for an arrest to start initiating impeachment proceeding against Mr Torres.

The legislature plays a critical role in providing checks and balances and they have the power to conduct oversight and investigations, she said.

In February 2013, the House impeached then-governor Benigno Fitial on charges of corruption, felony, and neglect of duty.

Mr Fitial resigned days after he was impeached.