Masao "Sabo" Esebei has been removed as speaker of the ninth Ngardmau state Legislature after a resolution signed by majority of the legislators was adopted to reorganize their leadership last Tuesday night.
Mr. Esebei was replaced by Johnny Tudong as the new speaker with Terence Miyozawa elected as vice speaker. Willard Kumangai stepped-down as vice speaker but took the floor leadership position. While no reason was given as to the legislature's decision to change leadership, some in the state leadership were dismayed with Esebei's action of circulating a letter accusing a certain member of questionable actions.
"It is not proper to spread allegations against a member without giving the opportunity to respond," said a state government official close to the matter.
"The allegations are inconclusive," added the government officials. Esebei had accused legislator Kumangai as the person behind the move to reorganize the leadership of the state legislature.
"Your attempt to reorganize the leadership of our state legislature has just crossed the 'point of no return' so prepare to explain yourself to the people of Ngardmau and appropriate officials of the national government what this letter will bring to their attention," said Sabo in his June 7 letter to Kumangai.
Copies of Esebei's letter to Kumangai were distributed to Ngardmau governor, Ngardmau delegate, senate president, house speaker, office special prosecutor, ethics commission and the office of public auditor.
Esebei lodged 8 allegations against Kumangai that he says "compels opening for public viewing and analysis." He claims that Kumangai used of Ngardmau state vehicle for personal activities; use state procurement process to procure tires for personal use; damage to government property cause by excessive personal use; use of government property to promote illegal and immoral activities; illegal pay raise for spouse through illegal alteration of budget; the pay raise caused discontent among office workers; using government funds to curry favors and evidence and witness to support these claims.
Esebei served only six month since being installed in early January of this year.