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Kilili for governor?

By Nancy I. Maanao

Citizens of the Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands have started a petition to draft Congressman Gregorio "Kilili" Camacho Sablan for the 2022 gubernatorial election.

Embattled Republican Gov. Ralph Torres is expected to run for reelection if he is not first stopped by the federal government on corruption charges, or the Commonwealth Legislature by impeachment process. His administration is gearing up to spend more than half a billion dollars in federal direct aid to the CNMI ahead of the election. He already has taken steps to consolidate his power over the spending of that money through a new agency directly under his control.

Ironically, the person who worked to get that money to the CNMI was Kilili.

Anxiety over the misspending of that money by the Torres administration led Kilili last week to pen an open letter to the governor and his cronies warning them against corruption and cronyism.

"Stop the corruption and cronyism in the government. It is enough that people have lost their trust in their government. The Commonwealth was not established for your personal benefit.
"It is for the benefit and interest of the general public. For our people. Not for the personal interest and personal wealth of Ralph Torres and his family!" - Kilili to Torres in an open letter

CNMI Democratic Party chairwoman Nola Hix said "Several voters have expressed their strong support for Kilili to run for governor." Her party drafted this petition, which you can view and sign by clicking on this link: Kilili for Governor 2022. "This support came before the 2020 elections and even more now that we are gearing up for the 2022 General Elections," Ms. Hix said. "The Democratic Party of the NMI shares the same sentiments in our quest for the next Governor and Lieutenant Governor of the NMI."

Kilili has previously said he did not plan on running for governor in 2022, but that he would if a serious contender is needed against Torres.

"The Democratic Party of the NMI actually circulated a physical petition after the election so we’ve been collecting signatures. Our online quest is at the request of our supporters so that we can start preparing for 2022. I’ve been inundated with positive messages of support as our allies abroad are sharing the link with families and friends. Folks are tired of all the negative publicity, and hardships endured under this current administration - it’s TIME for CHANGE." - Nola Hix

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