Dept. of Corrections Commissioner Replaced

February 16, 2010

Governor Fitial has switched positions of two key members of his administration. Department of Corrections Commissioner, Dolores Aldan has been replaced by Ramon (Ray) Mafnas who has been serving as Fitial's senior policy advisor. Aldan will now serve as Fitial's "special assistant for political affairs."

Dolores Aldan, the controversial DOC Commissioner who was a key player in orchestrating the release of federal prisoner-masseuse Qingmei Cheng to give the governor a massage, has been under criticism since the story broke in early January 2010. Aldan is married to Vicente Aldan who is serving time in jail for putting a gun to the head of his former common-law wife and pulling the trigger three times. Aldan allowed her prisoner-husband to be released from prison for weekend furloughs. She was also involved in an incident on Tinian that remains unresolved.

The governor's new press secretary made a snarky remark concerning the Marianas Variety, the newspaper that is under financial and verbal attack by the Fitial Administration. From the Saipan Tribune:
Press Secretary Angel A. Demapan said yesterday that Mafnas' appointment as Corrections commissioner is contrary to a report that appeared in yesterday's issue of another newspaper purporting that Aldan has been reappointed Corrections commissioner.

“It is my duty to correct misrepresentations made to the general public. That being said, it is also my responsibility to remind the people that all executive appointments are made by the governor, not the Variety,” he said.

Mafnas, who has a criminal justice background, served as Fitial's senior policy advisor since he was first elected into office. He also served as acting Corrections commissioner acting commissioner for the Department of Public Safety.

Demapan said Fitial on behalf of Lt. Gov. Eloy S. Inos told Mafnas in his appointment letter that the administration “believe(s) in your skills and talents will be best served as the Commissioner of the Department of Corrections.”
It should be noted that the governor has refused to provide the Marianas Variety with news from the governor's office for quite some time, as editor Zaldy Dandan detailed in his editorial last week:
Since November, his administration has refused to provide information to Variety reporters, but clearly we have not learned our “lesson” and should be “disciplined” more severely. Hence, the cancellation of federally financed public information ads, and never mind if he has no authority over the funds or even if a contract was already signed.
If the governor expects accurate reporting he should distribute the facts and news to all media outlets and stop the vindictive games. Otherwise does he have the right to express a complaint, either himself or through his press secretary? Probably not.


Anonymous said...

No he does NOT have a right to complain. He needs to stop the pettiness and get to work to fix the mess here.

Anonymous said...

What's with the "special" labels in this administration? "Special" legal counsel and now "special" assistant for political affairs? What's so "special" about these people?

Anonymous said...

In the kingdumb here Bennie rules.

Captain said...

So will Aldon's husband still get "weekend leave". I wonder why the judge has not gotten into this "deal"??.
This is typical though, (A Samoa also does the same) promote a person (incompetent crook) to a higher position and making it a "special" to justify the "vacancy" that does not exist.

Anonymous said...

What a funny official shuffle, just like a "Regodon"!