Ethics Committee dismisses complaint against Sen. Esteves

Legislature seal. (PNC file photo)

Acting Chairwoman of the Ethics Committee Senator Regine Biscoe Lee announced the group determined the screened complaint does not warrant further investigation.

Guam – The ethics complaint lodged last month against the Legislative Ethics Committee Chairman Senator Fernando Esteves has been dismissed.

The complaint was filed by Barry Mead, a former Guam Education Board member and educator, on the grounds that the senator violated his oath of office when he participated in a protest in front of Andersen Air Force Base.

In an official statement to the media, Acting Chairwoman of the Ethics Committee Senator Regine Bisco Lee announced that the committee has determined that the screened complaint does not warrant further investigation or action by the committee.

Subsequently, the committee notes that the complaint is now dismissed and the matter considered closed.  Senator Lee notes that Senator Esteves was not a participant in any of the ethics proceedings.

Meanwhile, Senator Esteves released the following statement concerning the dismissed complaint:

“I appreciate that the committee has dismissed the complaint filed against me on October 12, 2017 and determined that it does not warrant further investigation or action by the committee. I want to thank the committee members for their hard work during this difficult process. It is no easy task to screen and deliberate such a matter, but this process is imperative in keeping leaders accountable. The ethics process is important to catch issues existing in the gray area before it crosses the line. And I respect the complainant’s right to express his dissatisfaction.

“In my career as a leader serving in many capacities I follow the same principles. I take every opportunity to reflect on all things I’ve done, all things I’ve failed to do, all things I’ve done right, and all things I’ve done wrong. I take every moment as an opportunity to learn, grow, improve, and most importantly share with others what I’ve learned. I am not above admitting my faults. The events of that day and the success in bringing preservation issues back to the forefront could have been accomplished without the comments I made. I apologize for my comments to Brigadier General Douglas Cox, and I will convey that personally as well in an official letter.

“I will always fight for the indigenous human rights of the Chamorro people, and I will always fight for people of Guam. My resolve will not be broken, but I must be responsible in my use of free speech to not use it to make personal attacks. There have been questions regarding the inquiry with the Guam Army National Guard. I want the public to know that this internal personnel matter has been resolved to the satisfaction of myself and the leadership. I am glad to put these matters behind me and to continue my work in implementing the people’s agenda.”