Vice President and Minister of Justice J. Uduch Sengebau-Senior.

No documentation exists that provides state legislatures with a basis to declare a vacancy for those law enforcement officers that hold legislative positions in state governments, confirmed Vice President and Minister of Justice J. Uduch Sengebau-Senior.

Law enforcement officers that also held elected offices were informed in July that they violated Bureau of Public Safety regulations which prohibited police officers from holding a public office and that they had until December 1st to inform BPS of their occupation preference.

The officers were supposed to submit letters of resignation to the Bureau of Public Safety if they wished to remain state legislators but if they didn’t submit resignations, that meant they chose to remain as officers. It is unclear whether or not the officers are required to provide proof to the Bureau of Public Safety that they no longer occupy other public office positions.

BPS Director Aguon responded at last week’s press conference that there’s a verification process but a chief/legislator of one of the affected States said that they’ve no idea how to proceed because they have not received any indication that the officers are resigning from their positions as legislators.

Most state legislatures require a reason to declare a vacancy in the legislature, and therefore a letter of resignation to a state legislature from the officer is needed for the vacancy to be declared.

BPS Director Aguon said at last week’s press conference that they had ways to verify but did not indicate specifically if a resignation letter to the state legislature was one such document.

Meanwhile, one of the officers Billy Rekemel from Peleliu had filed his petition to run again for Peleliu Legislature.  He had indicated that he plans to challenge the BPS decision in court. (By: L.N. Reklai)

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