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    Monday, June 17, 2019-11:04:23A.M.

     

     

     

     

     

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David M. Sablan: Government shouldn’t tell us what to do with our land

RETIRED business executive David M. Sablan on Saturday encouraged a newly organized group of Northern Marianas descent persons to protect their land, but without the government making decisions for landowners.

“The property belongs to me so I do not want the government to look over my shoulder because I think we are all educated people,” Sablan told the NMD group during its organizational meeting at the Saipan Leadership Courtyard in Chalan Kanoa.

Click to enlarge
David M. Sablan, rights, speaks during a meeting of a new NMD group at the Saipan Leadership Courtyard on Saturday.  Photo by Emmanuel T. Erediano

“I am 75 percent Carolinian and 25 percent Chamorro. My father was the first elected mayor in Saipan in 1945. I am here because I was told by my sister-in-law that there’s a meeting of NMDs. I would really like to see this meeting continue and succeed,” he said.

He said he and other NMDs wanted to abolish Article 12 of the CNMI Constitution because “I think we are smart enough to take care of our own affairs.”

Article 12 restricts the acquisition of permanent and long-term interests in real property within the Commonwealth to persons of Northern Marianas descent.

“Why is it that we have to leave it up to this government to tell us, ‘Yes, you can lease your property,’ or ‘No, you cannot lease the property?’”

The elected officers of the new NMD group are John R. Castro, chairman; Glenn Manglona, vice chairman; Celina Babauta, secretary; and former Rep. Anna S. Teregeyo, treasurer.

Also attending the meeting were Elizabeth Rechebei, Juan I. Tenorio, Daniel O. Quitugua, Frank Tomokane, Maria Castro, Julie Manglona, Tony Mareham and about 20 other individuals.