Babauta did not comply with CNMI personnel regulations. He believed that they were being paid above the salary cap for government employees, and had been appointed to fill nonexistent positions. Governor Babauta defended his appointments by saying that every governor before him had made similar appointments. Attorney General Torres felt that he could not permit this to happen under his watch and proposed to hire a special prosecutor, because he was an appointee of the governor and it would have been a conflict of interest for him to prosecute his boss. The problem was that any contract he offered an independent prosecutor would have to be signed by the governor, and thus would not have a very good chance of succeeding. In January 2003, he tendered his resignation, saying only that the governor knew the reason. Torres was replaced by Ramona Manglona, the first local female attorney. She only served for a few months before being appointed to fill a vacancy in the Superior Court in April. The next attorney general was supposed to be Pam Brown, the governor's personal legal counsel. However, due to a subsequent meltdown in the Senate, and questions raised by certain senators, Ms
The Contemporary Pacific – University of Hawai'I Press
Published: Jan 23, 2004
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