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  • By Pacific island Times News Staff

All set for Monday’s CNMI inaugural festivities

Ralph Torres

Saipan — Gov. Ralph DLG. Torres and Lt. Gov. -elect Arnold I. Palacios are set to take their oaths of office as the 9th governor and 12th lt. governor of the CNMI on Monday at noon at the Northern Mariana Islands Soccer Training Center in Koblerville.

Torres on Tuesday issued a memo authorizing non-critical employees of the Commonwealth’s departments and agencies to take administrative leave on Jan. 14to attend and participate in the inaugural events.

"As we inaugurate a new set of leaders for our Commonwealth, we look back at the progress we have made and remain committed to the work ahead. Together, we have overcome challenges that seemed impossible to overcome and disasters that have shaken us to our core. Through it all, we kept our spirits high and committed ourselves to work together to solve common problems and to help one another," Torres said.

The following events are scheduled to kick-off the 2019 Inauguration with the Inaugural #MarianasStrong Concert on Saturday, Jan. 12, with talent from throughout the Marianas to be held at the Marianas Business Plaza from 3 p.m. to 10 p.m., with a firework show at 9:30 p.m.

This event will feature booths dedicated to ongoing relief efforts providing information, supplies and resources with some of our local partners, such as Karidat, Empty Vessel Ministries, the Marianas Young Professionals and many more who have played vital roles during recovery.

Arnold Palacios

The following day on Sunday, Jan. 13, the inaugural Red Mass will be held at the Mt. Carmel Cathedral in Chalan Kanoa at 3 p.m., where the community can join in the blessing of our newly elected and returning leaders for the service ahead.

On Monday, Jan. 14, inaugural ceremonies kick-off with the Mayor of Saipan David M. Apatang beginning at 8:30 a.m.

The 21st Northern Marianas Commonwealth Legislature will be formally organized later in the morning with the House of Representative at 10:00 a.m. and the Senate at 11 a.m.

Torres and are sworn in at noon at the Northern Mariana Islands Soccer Training Center in Koblerville. The Inaugural Luncheon will immediately follow the ceremony on the grounds.

Chairman of the CNMI Inauguration Committee Matthew Deleon Guerrero said the festivities will also be dedicated to the ongoing recovery and relief efforts.

"We are looking forward to an event that brings together our community to celebrate the strength and resiliency of our people. The 2019 Inauguration Committee has put their hearts into providing the public a great set of events for our community to participate in and enjoy. We welcome and look forward to seeing our community come together," Deleon Guerrero said.

In celebration of the inaugural festivities, numerous dignitaries from Micronesia, Guam, the Pacific, and the US mainland will be in attendance.

The 2019 CNMI Inaugural Festivities will be streamed live on the Office of the Governor Facebook page at and the Northern Marianas College Facebook page at

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