Should Borja be terminated from the CLTC? - KUAM.com-KUAM News: On Air. Online. On Demand.

Should Borja be terminated from the CLTC?

Posted: Jun 11, 2018 3:25 PM Updated:

In light of the recent controversies surrounding the Chamorro Land Trust, KUAM News hit the campaign trail – asking your gubernatorial candidates for their two cents on the state of the Trust.

Democrat contender Lou Leon Guerrero saying to fix the CLTC, it’s not necessarily about what she would do – but what she wouldn’t do.

“I don’t really support a third-party overseer, I don’t support a moratorium on it,” Leon Guerrero said. “I support stronger leadership and I support strengthening the regulations.”

Leon Guerrero referencing Senator Frank Aguon Jr.’s Bill 284 – which calls for both a third-party overseer for the CLTC and a moratorium on the issuance of CLTC leases. Aguon – also a Democrat looking to move into Adelup – is sticking to his guns.

“You’re going to need someone who understands the rule of law – who’s going to have to come in from the outside and ensure that they are able to administer the program according to what is required by law,” Aguon said.

Two-term former Govenor Carl Gutierrez says part of the problem with the issues at the CLTC – the fox guarding the henhouse – Gutierrez calling into question how effective it is for the CLTC to review itself.

“The same people that allowed it to happen are the same guys that are looking at it,” Gutierrez said.

Democrat Senator Dennis Rodriguez Jr. telling KUAM News CLTC leaseholders shouldn’t be blamed for the Land Trust’s problems saying the blame “should be placed squarely on the corrupt officials who have caused this controversy.”

Land Management Director Mike Borja has escaped the CLTC controversy relatively unscathed – even though he signed off on several relatives’ leases for CLTC land, facilitated the clearing of the CLTC’s Barrigada Heights property without permits and allowed all of this current controversy to occur under his watch.

If you were Governor now and Director Borja was performing the way he’s been performing would you make the call to fire him?

“Umm – it’s hard for me to say because I don’t know the whole situation, but I certainly will bring him to my office and he would have to explain what has happened and discuss with him what would be the best alternative for him,” Leon Guerrero said.

Senator Aguon was a little clearer with his answer.

“That individual has no business serving on behalf of the people of Guam in a critical position such as director,” Aguon said. “The answer is yes – he would be fired.”

 While Borja may be looked at as guilty in the court of public opinion, Gutierrez said - as a victim of what he calls media persecution himself – we should cut Borja some slack.

“You’re innocent until proven guilty. You cannot go out there and ask somebody off the street ‘you gonna fire him?’ – when you don’t know the entire story,” Gutierrez said.

Rodriguez Jr. telling KUAM News he “would fire” Borja if he was Governor.

We reached out to lone Republican gubernatorial candidate Ray Tenorio for comment and we have yet to receive a response.

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